Hospitals charging genuine amount from patients, allegations baseless: Owners
Srinagar, Oct 08: Amid ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the people across the Valley, who visit the private health institutions here, have alleged that they are being charged hefty sums for surgeries, thus fleecing the hapless patients.
Talking to the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), a lady patient, who is scheduled to undergo a surgery after some days at a private hospital, said that she was asked to keep Rs 40,000 ready for the surgery following which the procedure will be started.
“I am not the only case, who has been asked to keep the amount ready, but there are many patients who were there in the queue and have been asked to keep the hefty sum ready for the surgery,” she said.
She added that she would have preferred to visit the government hospital instead of a private health institute, but the ongoing pandemic is compelling the hapless patients to visit the private hospitals where unfortunately, the poor patients are being left to lurch at large.
Another patient, who has also got a date for the surgery told KNO that he was asked to get Rs 80,000 ready for the surgery, which will be conducted probably in the next week.
He added that such a behavior of fleecing the patients will only leave poor patients to suffer. “The government hospitals are filled with the COVID patients and people don’t want to visit these hospitals at this juncture to keep themselves away from the virus. But, the poor patients due to the behavior of private hospitals are being forced to enter the danger zone (Government hospitals) for surgery related issues,” he added.
The patients later appealed to the government to intervene into the matter and ensure the charges being collected from them will be reduced so that poor patients can also afford to visit the private hospitals.
Meanwhile, Dr. Muzaffar Jan, owner of Modern Hospital told KNO that charging sum solely depends upon the surgery.
“There are many components involved like, room charges, theatre charges, medicine charges, anesthetic charges and surgeon charges. We are not collecting the charges as per will, but charge as per the procedure. Charges of theater are Rs 3500 per hour while room can be taken by the patient as per the comfort. We don’t force anyone to take the room as per our choice. We are collecting genuine sums from the patients,” he said.
He added that in most of the cases, Rs 22,000 to Rs 35,000 are being charged from the patients for the surgery, which include, room charge, surgeon charge, anesthetic charge, medicine and other charges as well.
Dr Imran, owner of Florence hospital in Srinagar, couldn’t be contacted for the comments as he didn’t receive the repeated phone calls from this reporter.