‘Increase in expenditure due to delay in MRI scanners installation’

This resulted in an avoidable expenditure of Rs 1.12 crore and delay of over one year in the commencement of MRI scan services to needy patients, it said.
Representative Image
Representative Image

CHENNAI: Due to delay in installation of MRI scanners at three government hospitals in Tamil Nadu, the expenditure was higher, revealed a CAG report.

This resulted in an avoidable expenditure of Rs 1.12 crore and delay of over one year in the commencement of MRI scan services to needy patients, it said.

Audit noticed that higher rate paid was on account of delayed supply of MRI scanners due to delay in getting the installation site ready in Kancheepuram, Perambalur and Tirupur government hospital authorities.

Tamil Nadu Medical Services Corporation Limited (TNMSC), provides a range of services to government medical institutions, including procurement and supply of medical equipment. During 2017-19, TNMSC procured MRI scanners for 22 Government Headquarters Hospitals (GHQH) and Government Medical College Hospitals (GMCH), by utilising funds provided by the Government of India.

A technical committee constituted by TNMSC framed the technical specifications of the MRI scanners suitable for different types of government hospitals in 2017. Depending on the size and requirement of healthcare centers, four different models of MRI scanners were decided to be procured. Later, the TNMSC floated an open tender in August 2017 for supply, installation and commissioning of the scanners.

Audit scrutiny of records during June to August 2021, at TNMSC and the hospitals disclosed that the actual rate paid to the supplier in respect of three MRI scanner units was higher. The higher rate paid was on account of the delayed supply of MRI scanners due to delay in getting the installation site ready by the hospital authorities.

The failure of the hospital authorities to effectively coordinate with PWD and TNMSC to ensure readiness of the site for the MRI scanner on time had resulted in an avoidable excess expenditure of Rs 1.12 crore.

In March 2022, while accepting the audit findings the state government stated that the excess expenditure of Rs 1.12 crore was due to the demand of 125 KVA power supply for the installation of MRI scanners in the above districts. However, the reply from the government was not specific to the reasons for delays in site identification and power connection.

The audit recommends that suitable inter-departmental structures should be established at field level to discuss and sort out issues with PWD authorities to avoid recurrence of similar issues.

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