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squeezed

719
SUNIL NEGI
 It sounds irritating and extremely worrisome that despite our prime minister Narendra Modi’ s best efforts to massively bring down the rates of stents used in the private and government hospitals to release the jam or squeezed heart arteries allowing the smooth flow of blood to heart chambers and saving the  cardiac patients lives’, majority of the private and high profile hospitals are still charging too high rates and harassing poor and middle class patients. Some of the  hospitals are charging the package starting from three laths or more while some 2.20 lac to start with for bypass surgeries. The point is where would the poor and lower middle class patient go? The condition of majority of the government hospitals in the capital is not good in the sense that they are over crowded and the waiting list of cardiac surgical patients is too long. By the time their turn arrives the cardiac patient for want of early surgery dies. Some of the patients of the marginalized classes are either unaware of the consequences of severe heart ailments while many compromise to lead a risky life due to non availability of requisite funds. The fact of the matter is that majority of the government hospitals all over the country are ill equipped with the facilities of cardiac surgeries, surgeons and necessary hi tech equipment s to conduct these operations. And as a result people from all over the country suffering from heart ailments throng the metropolis like Delhi, Mumbai and South for cardiac surgeries selling their properties or even seeking loans on heavy interests from the private money lenders. In Delhi’s All India Institute of Medical Sciences the waiting list is too long and takes more than a year for surgery. Hundreds of thousands of cardiac patients with their families could be seen living in bus stand shelters, Metro vicinity and the nearby parks who come to Delhi from far flung areas and states but could not go back due to paucity of funds and long wait for surgery. This overcrowding of government hospitals help the private heart institutes of Delhi and NCR who exploit the situation to their advantage and charge heavily from such distressed patients whose cardiac condition does not allow for further wait as surgery like bypass, open heart and provision of stents is required urgently keeping in view the extensive blockage of the heart arteries. The private hospital authorities have no reason to be compassionate. They want one hundred percent full payment to be  deposited either in cash or in the form of draft, failing which they take no time to turn out the patient even if he or she is dyeing or groaning with acute pain. The government of the day should seriously emphasize on building more and more high specialized hospitals that are able to treat maximum number of patients suffering from critical illnesses including conduction of heart surgeries at extremely cheaper rates so as to serve the maximum patients thronging Delhi, Mumbai and Southern India for the highly expensive surgeries in private hi tech hospitals which  are actually the privilege of the only rich and affluent these days.  The government should also exercise checks on private hospitals of Delhi and NCR stringently and ask them strongly to lower the packages of stents and heart surgeries in the near future. If need be special checks and audit of these hospital should be conducted  at regular intervals and the central and  state governments concerned should tie up with them to ensure that maximum number of poor patients requiring urgent surgeries belonging to the respective states, are taken care of, forthwith. In foreign countries it is primarily the responsibility of the state to ensure that each and every patient is taken care of , in however critical state, he or she is?  But the Delhi government in fact deserves to be complimented for its recent pro people decision under which good number of hospitals have been brought under the purview of the economically deprived people of Delhi who can get treatment and surgeries of critical illness done in several high profile private hospital provided they procure the income certificate of less than one lac rupee annual income from the area SDM on genuine grounds and submit the same along with other adequate residential proofs to the department of Arogya Nidhi under the jurisdiction of government of Delhi at a stipulated time frame. The other state governments of the country should follow suit. What do you say friends?