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No takers for subsidised scans at GT hospital

Patients, who often wait for hours and sometimes days for their turn for a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) or CT (Computed Tomography) scan at JJ hospital, remain unaware of subsidies at the private setup at GT hospital. The imaging centre, operating on the GT hospital premises is allowed to charge their own rates to private patients, but they are obligated to carry out a certain number of free MRI and CT scans everyday for patients referred from a government hospital. 

When Sunday MiD DAY spoke to a few MRI scan patients at JJ hospital, they were unaware of the facility and confirmed that their doctors had not informed them.

Dr Viral Shah, medical director and neuro-radiologist, said, “Twelve MRI and 20 CT scans are done for free at the centre. The patients are charged by the government hospital and not by the centre.”

A doctor at the imaging centre at GT hospital alleges that a few senior doctors at JJ hospital are unhappy with the private-public partnership (PPP) project and do not refer their patients to this centre.

Sunday MiD DAY found a patient from GT hospital at JJ’s imaging centre. Paresh Khambe, whose father Balu Khambe is currently admitted in GT hospital had left his father alone at the hospital and come to JJ to collect his father’s CT scan report. He said, “My father underwent an operation in his abdomen and has been admitted at GT hospital for over a month now. On Thursday, I had to bring my father all the way to GT hospital because the doctor treating him asked us to get it done here.”

He added, “The doctor did not inform us that the same scan could be done at the private imaging centre for the same price. We are also entitled to a free scan as I am a yellow ration cardholder. I found out only today that I could have done the scan for free even at GT hospital.”

Another patient, who did not wish to reveal his identity, said, “I have been waiting for over eight hours outside the MRI scan centre but our turn has not come yet. My father and I have been waiting since 10 am and we already missed our number when we came on Thursday. Our doctor did not inform us about the facility at GT hospital. We could have had the scan done quicker if we were referred to that centre.” 

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