Hyderabad: Dialysis, diabetic and cardiac patient management were badly affected on Tuesday as private hospitals stopped Employee Health Scheme for state government staff and Aarogyasri in the state because the state government has not cleared its dues for nine months.
The withdrawal of services hit patients who come regularly for free dialysis and they were in for a shock when they were told that they must pay.
Mr Vishal Kumar, whose father had to undergo dialysis at Apollo Hospitals, said, “We were not aware of this change. I had to rush and get the money to pay for dialysis. There is no board outside, no information to the patients when they come in that the scheme has been stopped.”
Hospitals had a rush of patients as it was after a long weekend and the people who came with cards where being told that free service had been stopped. They must pay or go to government hospitals.
Ms Sulochna R, 69, developed diabetic ketosis and had to be rushed to the hospital for medical management. The ambulance service explained that they have to opt between government hospitals and private hospitals where the scheme had been stopped. The family opted to pay in a private hospital to avoid going to a government hospital.
Mr Mujtabha Askari of Helping Hand Found-ation, who works with government hospitals, said patients reached out for financial assistance as private hospitals were not taking up elective surgery or procedures.
“When we agree to help them financially and put the options of private versus government they refuse government hospitals and want to mobilise funds for private only. Hence there is a reverse effect of this shut down as people are paying to the private hospitals for the treatment only,” Mr Askari said. The shift of the patients seen is in the case of Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences where most of the patients go when they cannot afford to pay the private hospitals.
A senior doctor in Nims said, “The shutdown by private hospitals increases the patient load.”...