Fortis Hospital asked to return Rs 2L, fined Rs 50K

kolkata: The West Bengal Clinical Establishment Regulatory Commission (WBCERC) on Monday directed Fortis Hospital in Anandapur to return Rs 2 lakh to a patient who was exorbitantly charged and it has also slapped a fine of Rs 50,000 on the hospital for repeatedly violating the advisories of the Commission.

WBCERC Chairperson Justice (retired) Ashim Banerjee has expressed dissatisfaction over the way the Fortis Hospital flouted the advisories on repeated occasions. Banerjee said the hospital was earlier alerted four times for flouting the advisories. This is for the fifth time they have violated the advisories.

Dalia Goswami (52), a resident of Barrackpore, was admitted to the hospital on May 19 in 2021 and stayed there till June 17. She had been under treatment at the hospital for 29 days. The patient was cured and released from the hospital. The hospital had charged the patient Rs 23.64 lakh.

The patient had to bear 60 per cent of the cost of the treatment and the rest was paid by the insurance company. Patient was charged Rs 10 lakh for medicines, Rs 4.5 lakh for investigations and Rs 2 lakh for consumables.

After examining the bills the WBCERC found that Rs 3.30 lakh was excessively charged and the advisories which were earlier sent to the hospitals by the Commission have been ignored while preparing the bill.

As the patient had paid 60 per cent of the total bill, the Commission has asked the hospital to refund Rs 2 lakh. The Commission has imposed an additional fine of Rs 50,000 on the hospital for not abiding the advisories.

The WBCERC had issued a series of advisories to the private hospitals fixing various rates and making the discounts of medicines and consumables mandatory.

"A costly test was performed on the patient without the written permission of the patient's family members. Some unnecessary tests were also performed by the hospital," said Banerjee.

In a similar incident, the Commission has also directed Basu Nursing Home in Siliguri to refund Rs 10,000 as it did not give proper discounts on medicines and consumables.

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