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Health Commission asks Apollo to refund Rs 1 lakh

Health Commission asks Apollo to refund Rs 1 lakh
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Kolkata: The West Bengal Clinical Establishment Regulatory Commission (WBCERC) has asked the Apollo Gleneagles Hospital to refund Rs 1 lakh to the family members of a cancer patient who died at the hospital during treatment.

The WBCERC Chairperson Justice (retired) Ashim Kumar Banerjee said the patient, Shyamal Bhattacharya, was undergoing treatment at the hospital for cancer. He tested positive for Covid 21 days after his admission. The hospital authorities cannot shrug off their responsibilities as the patient was found Covid positive in 21 days since admission. The patient, however, died in the hospital later. The hospital had charged Rs 15 lakh out of which the deceased's family members had paid Rs 9 lakh and the remaining amount was settled by the insurance company. The Commission has directed the private hospital to refund Rs 1 lakh to the family.

The Commission has also asked CMRI Hospital to give a discount of Rs 29,000 to the family members of a patient who died at the hospital. The patient was Covid positive. The hospital had charged a total bill of Rs 3.5 lakh. The patient's family members are yet to pay Rs 79,000 out of the total amount to the hospital. An altercation broke out between the hospital staff members and the deceased's family members during the release of the body that was later released following the intervention of the police.

The Commission found that the hospital charged the patient exorbitantly on pathology. Hence, it had asked the hospital to give a discount of Rs 29,000 out of total remaining of Rs 79,000. The family members have to pay the remaining amount. The Commission also observed that the hospital authorities can take legal action if the deceased's family members do not pay the remaining amount. The family members, however, told the Commission that they would not be able to pay the remaining amount.

The Commission has also asked Daffodil Nursing Home to pay Rs 25,000 to the family members of a patient who committed suicide by throwing himself from the nursing home building. Amit Hazra told the nurses that he would go to the toilet and later jumped off from there. The Commission found some negligence on the part of the nursing home.

It may be mentioned here that the WBCERC has already increased the number of hearings to resolve more cases within a short span of time. The Commission has been conducting physical hearing twice in a month now to resolve some old cases which required face to face interaction. The WBCERC had resolved all the pending cases by the last week of December last year.

Apart from physical hearing, the Commission has also been holding virtual hearings every week. WBCERC has become a great platform where the patients and family members can lodge their complaints and articulate grievances against the private health establishments.

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