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Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Chandigarh: Private hospital in dock for using ‘abnormal’ no. of oxygen cylinders

The Chandigarh Administration had assigned the charge of coordinating with all private hospitals in Chandigarh regarding their availability of beds and supply of medical oxygen to Jagjit Singh, PCS on May 6.

Written by Hina Rohtaki | Chandigarh |
June 3, 2021 2:05:47 am
Chandigarh, COVID-19Oxygen cylinders at Covid care centre at Bal Bhawan, Sector 23, Chandigarh. (File)

The Chandigarh Administration on Wednesday pulled up Eden Critical Care Hospital and recommended action against the private facility for consuming an “abnormal quantity” of oxygen cylinders in comparison to the number of patients that needed it.

It also said that the “possibility of hoarding/black marketing/illegal diversion” cannot be ruled out.

A report on the same was submitted to Health Secretary Arun Gupta, Tuesday.

The Chandigarh Administration had assigned the charge of coordinating with all private hospitals in Chandigarh regarding their availability of beds and supply of medical oxygen to Jagjit Singh, PCS on May 6.

Considering the acute shortage of medical oxygen, it was decided to rationalise the distribution of oxygen and fix a daily quota for each of the private hospital. During the process, it was observed that ‘M/s Eden Critical Care Hospital’ was consuming an abnormal quantity of about 350 cylinders per day while another hospital of almost same capacity was consuming 90 cylinders only.

“Even if all the beds were occupied and all patients were at high flows of oxygen, the consumption of D-Type cylinders could not have been more 150 or 160,” said the report.

It was stated that Eden Hospital had accepted charges of not keeping proper opening and closing balance of oxygen cylinders on a daily basis. By their own admission, not keeping proper record of a lifesaving resource of medical oxygen, which was in short supply during the upsurge of pandemic, shows irresponsible behavior on the part of hospital authorities.

“It is clear that the number of patients has gone down by 25 per cent only but the consumption of medical oxygen cylinders has gone down by 58 per cent. In other words, with the present consumption pattern, Eden Hospital should have consumed only 1,641cylinders for 565 patients during the Period-I, but it consumed 2,935 cylinders. Hence there is no explanation for about 1300 oxygen cylinders during a period of ten days. If we take a higher period for comparison then the unexplained consumption may be much more,” added the report.

The officials stated that despite repeated requests by the Inquiry Committee, Eden Hospital did not provide the daily list of patients along with the purpose of admission/treatment being given from April 1 onwards. Further the hospital did not produce the record of consumption of oxygen cylinders before the committee.

Nodal officer Yashpal Garg stated that he has gone through the enquiry report and other relevant facts. “There cannot be any justification for consumption of about 200 to 350 cylinders. Since the hospital has not produced the daily list of patients along with purpose of admission/treatment and proper record of oxygen consumption, the possibility of hoarding/black-marketing/ illegal diversion of medical oxygen cylinders cannot be ruled out,” he said.

“In view of above, it is requested that such acts on the part of M/s Eden Critical Care Hospital need to be dealt with strict exemplary action. The Health Department may initiate strict actions against M/s Eden Critical Care Hospital under the Disaster Management Act, 2005 or under the Chandigarh Epidemic Disease, Covid-19 regulations under any other applicable Act/Code/Rule/ Regulation/Instruction,” the report said.

On May 9, it was decided that a committee chaired by Jagjit Singh, PCS will conduct an inquiry about the abnormal consumption pattern of medical oxygen cylinders by ‘M/S Eden Critical Care Hospital from April 1 onwards. Dr Manjit Singh, GMSH-16 and Dr Manpreet Singh, GMCH-32 were other members of the Committee. The inquiry was completed and submitted on May 31.

The committee found that Eden Hospital used Medical Oxygen at a very high flow rates against the guidelines issued by the Government of India. Even stated leakages in the pipeline do not justify the exceptionally high consumption on certain date. Additionally, there was no explanation as to how the abnormal consumption before fixation of quota was reduced immediately after fixation of daily quota.

After a sensitisation programme for rational usage of oxygen done by a team from Chandigarh Administration in Eden Hospital in early May, the usage of oxygen cylinders has decreased and the usage pattern of such cylinders has been, more or less, uniform.

SHOW CAUSE NOTICE to P’kula hospitals

Deputy Commissioner Monday issued show-cause notices to two private hospitals, Paras Hospital and Ojas Hospital, acting as tertiary covid centres, for overcharging Covid patients in violation of the Haryana Government guidelines, while asking them to submit their replies within seven days.

Ojas Hospital is a a subsidiary of the Alchemist Hospital.

As many as five show cause notices have been issued including four on four different accounts of overcharging to Paras hospital and one to Alchemist hospital.

“We have received the copy of the show cause notice today only. We are assessing the matter and will be responding to the authorities appropriately,” said a statement issued by Ojas- Alchemist hospital, on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Paras hospital did not respond.

Paras hospital is also being investigated at the state level on three more accounts of overcharging which had been shared by the local MLA and Speaker of State Legislative Assembly, Gian Chand Gupta with the state health minister as well as the Chief Minister, while demanding enquiries into bills generated by private hospitals across the state.

Following the letter, Haryana health minister Anil Vij formed a three-member committee and marked an inquiry against the Paras Hospital, Panchkula, for overcharging Covid-19 patients on May 21.

Drama at Mohali pvt hospital

High drama was witnessed at a private hospital in Phase XI on Wednesday after the family members of a patient alleged negligence and overcharging by the hospital after the patient passed away. The hospital management refuted the allegations.

Manoj Kumar, a resident of Sector 71 said that his brother Santosh Kumar had come to visit him on May 5 and fell ill, following which he was admitted at Shalby hospital in Phase XI.

“On Wednesday, my brother Santosh Kumar died. The hospital has given us the bill of Rs15 lakh,” Manoj Kumar said.

Kumar further claimed that he will lodge a complaint with the Deputy Commissioner (DC) on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the hospital management refuted the allegations. Nitish, General Manager of the hospital told The Indian Express that the hospital had charged Rs 7 lakh bill and not 15 lakh. He said that there was no negligence on part of the hospital staff. “All the bills were charged as per the government guidelines,” he said.

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