August 4, 2015 2:30:06 am
Swine flu patients spent 17-62 times the per capita income of the country on treatment at a private hospital in the city this year, a study published in the journal, Current Medicine Research and Practice, says.
The study covered 209 H1N1 patients admitted at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital between January and March. It found that patients who shared wards, on an average, spent Rs 1,25,429 on cure, or 17 times India’s per capita income at Rs 7,378.17.
The cost of cure for patients kept in single rooms was, on an average, Rs 1,62,320, or 22 times the per capita income. Patients admitted in the intensive care unit (ICU), on an average, spent Rs 4,57,447 on cure, or 62 times the per capita income.
“The socio-economic effects of the outbreak of H1N1 have not been understood properly. We attempted to calculate the economic burden of the virus over a three-month period for the first time,” said Dr Atul Kakar, lead author of the study and senior consultant at the hospital’s department of medicine.
The study notes that the socio-economic cost could be more as the authors had not factored in the loss of productivity resulting from a patient staying away from office or school.
The study says 52.9 per cent of the patients had one or more co-existing medical conditions. Hypertension and diabetes were found in 23 per cent and 22.5 per cent of the patients, respectively.
The hospital stay of the patients ranged from a day to 41 days. On an average, a patient spent 7.69 days at the hospital.
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