Pune: 83 hospitals slammed notices for overcharging COVID patients; all bills over Rs 1.5 lakh being audited

Saurabh Rao

Mehab Qureshi

Pune, August 12, 2020: The Pune divisional commissioner has slammed notices on 83 hospitals for overcharging coronavirus disease (COVID-19) patients across Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad area. The official has stated that in most cases, the hospitals have forwarded their explanations, and the administration is assessing their replies.

Divisional commissioner Saurabh Rao said, “less number of government hospitals in the city has made us rely on private hospitals, but we are ensuring that the fee charged to the patients at private hospitals which is more than Rs 1.5 lakh are audited by 28 auditors and eight deputy collectors, who have been appointed to address complaints of overcharging”.
Rao also cited that the lack of an adequate number of government hospitals in Pune is also why Mumbai is doing better than Pune in order to treat COVID-19 patients. He said, “the number of government hospitals in Pune is lesser than that of Mumbai, which is the reason for lower bed availability.”
To tackle this situation, the administration has decided to come up with Jumbo COVID hospital which is being established at College of Engineering, Pune (CoEP), and Magar Stadium in Pimpri. “Not only Pune City but districts under Pune Division, such as Satara, Sangli, and Solapur, are also proposed to set up Jumbo facilities. The state government will soon take the decision,” said Rao.
Responding to the query about the lesser number of availability of beds, Pune Municipal Commissioner Vikram Kumar added, “52 hospitals under PMC are treating COVID infected patients. We have issued letters to seven hospitals and instructed them to convert the hospitals fully into a COVID care hospital.”