Raipur: The country is facing second wave of Covid-19 pandemic, more deadly than the first one, crippling the healthcare system with shortage of beds, oxygen and healthcare staff. Amidst the pandemic crisis, most of the private hospitals in the city are using the pandemic as an opportunity to make more profits charging hefty amounts for Covid-19 treatment.
“It is shameless that even during this time of crisis; “deal” of life is being done at the private hospitals. The brokers have fixed such a rate for each treatment as if you have come to decide the package of marriage or honeymoon. To witness I have to reach the hospital myself yesterday where a poor girl had taken her father who was taking his last breath”, says Chhattisgarh BJP leader Gauri Shankar Shrivas.
As a part of sting operation, we reached Laxmi Care hospital located in Bhatagaon Raipur. When enquired about the charges of admitting Covid-19 patient, the nurse replied “Rs 3 lakh for a bed with oxygen facility and Rs 5 lakh for a bed with ventilator facility”.
We agreed to pay the amount of Rs 3 lakh through cheque on the spot for admitting the patient to which the nurse asked us to speak to her superior. When we went to speak to her senior the doctor said that there was some mistake and the price for an oxygen bed is Rs 3.50 lakh and they will not accept cheque payment.
The case is similar in most of the private hospitals across the city. Covid-19 patients become cash cow for the private hospitals.
Although, treatment is free at government-run hospitals, but people are facing a hard time with lack of health facilities in the government sector and are forced to knock the doors of private corporate hospitals in emergency situations to save the lives of their loved ones.