Private hospitals taking undue advantage of pandemic: Tope

Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope has said private hospitals and diagnostic centres have taken undue advantage of the COVID-19 situation and they are overcharging patients even for basic health services.
Rajesh Tope
Rajesh Tope

Mumbai

Speaking at an event organised by the western region of industry body CII on Tuesday, Tope said there have been instances of these private facilities charging hefty sums from people for medical services.
"Private hospitals and diagnostic centres have taken undue advantage of the COVID-19 situation in the state. "There have been several occasions where these centres and hospitals have charged exorbitantly for basic health services during the COVID-19 situation," he said.
The state government has taken various measures to cap prices of health care services so that people can afford them, said the minister. "I came to know recently that for HRTC (High Resolution Computed Tomography) test, charges were as high as Rs 13,000," he said.
"Plasma therapy, which has not been very successful in treating COVID-19 patients, was still attracting charges of Rs 10,000 to Rs 12,000 for 200 ml supply. I have now capped it at Rs 5,500," Tope said. Charges of testings have also been capped. The volume is so huge that hospitals and laboratories can still make money by testing more and more people, he said.
Tope also said that the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown caused job losses and affected mental health of people. "In the post COVID-19 situation, how to address mental health issues is another challenge before me as several people have lost jobs," he said.

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