B’luru hosp charges COVID-19 patient Rs 5 lakh, Medical Education Minister fumes


PTI, Jul 29, 2020, 5:57 PM IST

Bengaluru: Taking exception to a private hospital for allegedly charging a COVID-19 patient Rs 5 lakh, Karnataka Medical Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar on Wednesday said he would take stringent action against the hospital.

Dr Sudhakar, in-charge of COVID-19 management in the state, posted the bill of Apollo Hospitals on his Twitter handle and said the hospital has allegedly been overlooking the government guidelines and warnings.

“I have come to know that the patients are suffering a lot at the Apollo Hospitals. I have warned it several times…” he said.

The government has fixed a cap of Rs 5,000-Rs 15,000 a day to charge the COVID-19 patients willing to undergo treatment in private hospitals.

When contacted, Apollo Hospitals said, “There was some communication error with the Minister. Our management has briefed him.” The billing has been done as per the insurance tariff, an executive of the hospital said.

He said the 64-year-old patient was admitted to the intensive care unit on July 3 and he continued to remain there.

He stated, “The family of the patient was okay with the bill. In fact, the patient’s son is in the medical field and he understands the situation well.”

When contacted, the patient’s son said he would not comment because the patient is still in the hospital.

“Our priority is to bring my father out of the hospital after complete recovery. At this point in time, I don’t want to complicate the matter further by commenting on it,” said the son.

A couple of weeks ago, a private hospital had slapped a bill of about Rs 9 lakh on a patient, which Dr Sudhakar had mentioned in his daily press briefing.

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