Private hospitals are putting H1N1 patients in the ICU and charging them around Rs. 30,000 to Rs. 40,000 per day. Apart from the ICU cost, the hospitals are also allegedly demanding Rs. 1.5 lakh to Rs. 2.5 lakh from swine flu patients for admitting them.
“Some hospitals are demanding huge sums from the patients. Our assessment says that the maximum charge for treatment of a severe respiratory-distressed patient in the ICU of a corporate hospital should be around Rs. 14,000 per day, including the cost of medicines. But they are charging around Rs. 30,000 to Rs. 40,000 per day,” a top Swasthya Bhavan official said.
Sources in the health department said a minister had recently sent his relative who is a swine flu suspect, to a private hospital in South Kolkata. The hospital demanded Rs. 1 lakh for admission.
When a senior health department official sent his relative to a private hospital at Anandapur, along the EM Bypass, the hospital demanded Rs. 2.5 lakh for admission. “Our department will launch a crackdown to streamline admissions to corporate sector hospitals. We have already issued show-cause notices to four private hospitals for not treating swine flu patients,” the health official said.