Bombay high court: ‘Inhuman’ to detain patients until payment of medical bills
A division bench of Justice VM Kanade and Justice PD Kode heard a petition filed by Sanjay Prajapati (25) urging it to direct MIDC Police, Andheri (East), to act against doctors and staff of SevenHills Hospital for wrongfully confining his brother over a disputed bill. He urged the court to direct the police to get the patient discharged and admitted to a suitable hospital for further treatment.
The petitioner said his brother Chinku suffered head injuries after a fall at home on 29 March 2014 and was admitted to SevenHills Hospital, where he was operated upon. Prajapati later wrote to the CEO alleging improper treatment and bogus billings, but received no response. Finding no improvement in his brother's condition, he decided to shift him elsewhere but the hospital refused to discharge him till the disputed bills were cleared.
Diwakar Dwivedi, Prajapati’s advocate, told the HC that out of a total bill of Rs 4.56 lakh, Rs 2.76 lakh was deposited and according to the hospital a balance of Rs 1.80 lakh was payable. “I have disputed it. I now want to shift my brother but they are refusing to discharge him unless the bills are paid. They cannot detain a patient in this manner,” the petitioner said.
“It is a practice at all hospitals to detain patients as long as money is not paid. It is inhuman. It is happening even in government hospitals. It is surprising,” said Justice Kanade.
Delhi government orders closure of private hospital
The directorate of health services, Delhi government, ordered the closure of Satyam Hospital, a private hospital in west Delhi, following the death of a patient who was initially treated there ‘by an unqualified person’. The closure order was for allegedly violating the provisions under Delhi Nursing Home Registration (Amendment) Rules, 2011, leading to fatal consequences for the patient being treated therein, a Delhi government statement said.
Director of Health Services Dr NV Kamat informed that the registration of the hospital stood cancelled with immediate effect based on the report submitted by Delhi Medical Council. According to the report, "it was evident that a patient named Kamini Solanki ultimately died due to the initial treatment provided in the hospital by an unqualified person working in the disguise of doctor."
Kamini Solanki, 34, was two months pregnant and admitted in the Satyam Hospital on 13 May 2012. She was died on the same evening on way to another hospital in the locality. The deceased’s husband Dhiraj Solanki in his complaint highlighted the death of his wife due to negligence.