GURUGRAM: The principal medical officer (PMO) of in Sector 10, Dr Jai Bhagwan Jatain, has asked Mediterina Group of hospitals of Kerala to install hoardings to promote the new opened in the hospital.
Jatain said despite high subsidies extended to the underprivileged, and the possibility of getting an done for Rs 50,000 (it costs between Rs 1 lakh and 2 lakh at a private hospital), not many are turning up at the centre. The Haryana government had signed an MoU with the Mediterina Group on a public-private-partnership (PPP) mode for this centre in April.

According to Dr Jatain, there are 84 beds at the heart centre. Till the first week of July, the had treated 814 patients, while 297 had received echocardiography, and 109 angiography and angioplasty, while they were expecting 2-3 times the numbers. All these facilities are free of cost for BPL and SC/ST people. For others, echocardiography comes for Rs 982 (Rs 2,500-5,000 in private hospitals), angiography for Rs 3,519 (Rs 12,000-15,000 in private hospitals).

Dr Prathap Kumar, chairman of Mediterina Group, gave other reasons for the low turnout, saying, “Unlike government hospitals in Faridabad, Panchkula and Ambala, where three to four thousand patients come every day, the Gurugram Civil Hospital is not that well known, which is why it receives fewer than 300 patients for all ailments daily. This hospital, which was hitherto known as a ‘mother-and-child’ hospital, gets around 200 patients for issues related to gynaecology and paediatrics, which are on the first floor. Not many people know our heart centre is also on the same floor. Besides, in Gurugram, patients have a huge choice of private hospitals.”

He also indicated there may be a nexus of doctors who are referring patients to private hospitals against a retainership. As per reliable sources, a complaint was also made to authorities about a cardiology diploma holder working in Civil Hospital, who has been referring heart patients to private hospitals. He apparently also run his own clinic in the vicinity. However, no action was taken against him. When asked, the PMO said he was unaware of the malpractice, but would look into it now that it has been brought to his notice.

Dr Prathap added, “Along with my team, I have performed over 180 angioplasties and 600 cath lab procedures in the last four months in Faridabad. More than 30% of the patients from the underprivileged sections of society have benefited from this subsidised initiative. The rest, who required angioplasty with a single stent, got the treatment for Rs 48,289, which is less than what government medical colleges charge.”

He further said the new heart centre had all modern amenities and much better space and bed facility than government hospitals, and expressed hope that with time, the teething problems will be overcome.

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