A BMC audit of the case of a 52-year-old woman who died of
The audit revealed that not only did the hospital charge the woman for five personal protective equipment (PPE) kits a day, it charged her separately for three N95 masks -which are meant to be part of the PPE kit – every day. The report also found that the hospital conducted several unnecessary tests on the woman, and that many of the tests were conducted between 1 am and 3 am to allow the hospital to charge more for them.
Based on the
The FIR, which names the hospital’s trustees and chairman, says that the patient was even charged for basic drugs such as paracetamol. The audit report noted, “Basic drugs like paracetamol, B complex and aspirin are priced nominally and are part of the package. Despite this they were charged separately.”
The BMC’s auditors also found that the hospital had conducted several tests on the woman multiple times, and that many of the tests were done between 1 am and 3 am to allow the hospital to hike the cost. The tests were reviewed by doctors at the BMC’s
A senior civic official said the report showed that between May 31 and June 13, Nanavati Hospital had violated the state government’s rules on Covid-19 treatment charges. In this and several other cases, patients were overcharged despite state government capping treatment charges, the official said.
Dr Prashant Narnaware, a nodal officer appointed to audit Covid-19 bills issued by
“The BMC must tell us how many bills have been audited by them. When we took up the issue with the hospital, they gave a discount of Rs 2 lakh. Even in the case of the 52-year-old women who died, we had complained to the state government. The police must arrest the top management of the hospital for cheating people. No action has been taken by the police after [filing] the FIR. We will have to take up this issue with higher authorities since the police are not taking any action,” Deshpande said.
A spokesperson for Nanavati Hospital said, “We are yet to formally receive a copy of the FIR. We are closely working with the authorities concerned to look into the concerns raised in this case.” Shriram Koregoankar, senior police inspector, Santacruz police station, said, “Our probe is on. We are collecting invoices and other documents pertaining to the case.”
The state government had last month issued a revised notification to cap treatment charges for Covid-19 and nearly 200 non-Covid procedures in private hospitals. As per the order, the capped rates will apply to 80% of hospital beds, while the management can charge their own prices for the remaining 20%. The price caps will stay in effect until August 31.