A day after an elderly Covid-19 patient died here in an ambulance while her family was allegedly trying to gather the money required for her admission to a private hospital off EM Bypass, the West Bengal Clinical Establishment Regulatory Commission (WBCERC) on Wednesday initiated an investigation into the incident.
The family of the woman, who was from Tamluk in Purba Medinipur district, has alleged that the hospital demanded Rs 3-lakh advance to admit her. The family lodged a complaint at Anandpur police station on Tuesday.
The WBCERC has allowed hospitals to charge an advance of no more than Rs 50,000, or 20% of the estimated treatment cost (whichever is lower) at the time of admission.
The regulatory body has registered a case against the hospital, and sought information from a nursing home in Park Circus where the woman had tested positive. The nursing home administration had asked the woman’s family to shift her to a Covid hospital. She was then taken to the hospital under the scanner, but was allegedly made to wait in the ambulance as her family tried to gather the admission fee allegedly demanded by the hospital.
According to the family members, they arranged Rs 80,000 but were told that at least Rs 1 lakh would have to be paid.
However, before the money could be arranged, the elderly woman, whose husband recently died of Covid-19, breathed her last. The hospital has, however, claimed the patient was in an extremely critical condition.
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