Private Mis-management: your misadventures at private hospitals and nursing homes
My wife underwent all the expensive tests and injections as recommended by the doctor and when the final decision to go ahead with IUI/IVF was to be undertaken says Aman Kohli and so many others. Here are their complains and what the doctors say.india Updated: Aug 20, 2009 14:26 IST
A pulmonologist, Dr PK Mangla, practicing with Indian Spinal Injuries Centre, caused the death of an elderly lady of more than 80 years suffering from bronchial asthma by doing a bronchoscopy on her when asthma is a contraindication for bronchoscopy. These procedures like bronchoscopies are done only to make money and when not indicated at all. These consultants say that they are done in critically ill patients but fact is that these are terminally ill patients and not critically ill and in these terminally ill patients no procedures are warranted. These consultants are doing it for money. These consultants are not at all accountable for their negligence. They should be whipped publicly for what they do. These Intensive Care Units (ICU) are also nothing but moneymaking graveyards of hospitals and lucrative business for the consultants and hospitals.
Sincerely, Dr Manish
Dr Vinayek (family physician & specialist)
First for Mr Shailender, if all major vessels are blocked then bypass surgery is life saving. I feel pity for Mr Sethi on his ignorance about stomachache. Thank God! It turned out to be an acidity, otherwise it could have been a major heart attack or any other deadly disease. Doctors took the right decision else he would have filed a case of medical negligence. Sir, my request to you, please try to bridge the gap in doctor-patients relationship, which are based on mutual trust and please don’t sensationalise issues as in majority of cases doctors do their best to save lives, working in odd hours. Please also consider highlighting plight of the doctors and in such letters also take experts' opinion.
Dr Ashok Gulati, Tilak Nagar, Delhi
In June 2008, my wife and I had approached Noble Hospital, Sec 14 Faridabad for IVF treatment under Dr Mala Arora. My wife underwent all the expensive tests and injections as recommended by doctor and when the final decision to go ahead with IUI/IVF was to be undertaken, a polyp was detected in my wife’s ovary, which the doctor admitted, should have been detected at preliminary stage itself using baseline ultrasound which was not done at all. To add to our dismay, she decided to continue with the process of IUI, in spite of detecting the polyp and used some advanced techniques for sperm purification for which we were charged twice the normal amount. After carrying out the process, the very next day my wife started bleeding and developed complications.
Again we were told by the doctor to get costly hormonal injections administered to sustain the procedure, having come thus far, but it also did not yield any result. After the doctor realized that there has been major fault in the process, the hospital was not ready to give us the reports until we forced them to do so and when we consulted other gynecologist for a second opinion, she confirmed that the baseline ultrasound should have been done earlier and then the polyp would not have developed/detected at earlier stage and would have been removed. So even after spending close to Rs 1 lakh, and all the mental agony, time and pain, we ended up with not only failed result but also lost hope on any such treatments in future.
Aman Kohli, 9811920223
I cannot agree more to the state of affairs at Gangaram Hospital. My father late Ajit Kumar Pal, (age 77) a retired DU Reader of Psychology died in sordid lack of care after a full 22 days admission (first in the ICU for some 15 days and then in a private room in the wards). Gangaram Hospital is a peculiar case study in an anarchist setup of mercenary doctors who fish in human misery and sickness to run a multi--crore businesses. For one, no doctor receives any wages at the hospital -- it is all from the common collection of consultation fees of individual departments. The quality of resident doctors is pathetic -- they never apply their brains at all, there is just a PR show of big action. There is no accountability, because the hospital is run by a guild of so many doctors (consultants) who are totally free and do not come under any authority at all. In my father's case, he was undergoing dialysis since May 2007 and I had repeatedly informed Dr Khullar (their Kidney Specialist) about his falling serum albumin level.
He however never took it seriously or even advised any tests although he asked my father to be brought to his private OPD and charged Rs 500 for consultations. He and his team consisting of one Dr Ojha and more unnamed juniors would walk through the corridors strutting like various avataras of Shah Rukh Khans and try to talk smart to all the patients. After repeated complaints to him (through a friend at the AIIMS who spoke to him) and to the Dialysis Ward junior doctors no advise to get any clinical tests were given, neither any treatment was offered, besides routine haemodialysis.
Finally, my father suffered from respiratory failure at nearly 4 PM on 7-7-2007 after the dialysis was declared over. I was ordered out of the dialysis room to get his arterial blood tested for oxygen at the ICUs in the New Building and the doctors then started a panic exercise bordering on to sorcery and then I saw him wheeled to the ICUs with a ventilator stuck in his mouth. The sordid fact is that the very doctor who did this charade of reviving him had examined him an hour back while he was under dialysis and declared him fit to take dialysis, in spite of my very vocal worries about his high intake of oxygen and the fear of his blood retaining a lot of carbon dioxide.
I had gone to the hospital with my father on a wheel chair, having driven him in my wife's Honda City with him sitting beside me with no oxygen support. And in the evening he was unconscious with a ventilator in the ICU, even after I kept telling the doctors about his gradually falling serum albumin levels and the risks of high mortality with lowered serum albumin levels. I could never visit my home till he died on the 29th of July. After a few days of all sorts of shenanigans the doctors came out with the weird theory that he had tuberculosis, which remained undiagnosed. But then they had looked closely at his chest X Ray in the beginning of May that was just 2 months back.
Suddenly, they could see spots of TB in the very same X Ray and got him tested again using a very advanced test and put him on anti-TB drugs; they also operated him to put him peritoneal dialysis. So the poor man was operated upon with the ventilator on. Then they inserted a tube in his chest cavity to drain all the haemo-discharge from his chest cavity. The doctors would enter the ICU with their shoes on, chewing gutka, constantly talking on the mobiles, with the masks casually around their neck. The chest specialist Dr. Basu would be constantly coughing while seeing the patients including my father.
Finally, I pleaded with the doctors to send him over to a private room so that he could spend some time with me. Somehow, it was done -- although, they charged me more for the private room stay compared to his ICU stay, which was nearly 35,000 per day. Before his end came, two days earlier, they would administer him human albumin from reliance (which is considered to be quite inferior), they suddenly started a very strong antibiotic which made his TLC count fall to an abysmal low, which Dr. Khullar dismissed as some clinical error in testing and asked a retest, while I pleaded seeing his deteriorating condition -- when he had no fever no bacterial infection, why did he need such a strong antibiotic infusion which had so many side effects?
Just because they thought, his TLC count was increasing a bit, though it was within normal range. But when it fell abnormally, after the antibiotic, they waited the whole day for a retest and persisted with the antibiotic. The retest confirmed the abyssmal fall of TLCs, so the antibiotics were taken off; but by that time he had started sinking. Dr. Khullar the night before advised my father to be given steam, while my father could not even speak or make a noise in his weak state. He was given steam, the loosened mucous got stuck in his trachea because he did not have the strength to cough it out and he choked and choked and finally could not fight back and succumbed at 9am on the 29th July 2007.
Some junior doctor appeared at 1am and advised him to be taken to the ICU again -- saying that his lungs were full of fluids. I asked home to get all the equipments in the room and asked him, how that was possible when in the evening his X Ray report was found to be reasonable. The ICU doctor also told me that in such a condition, the patient could only survive for a few days in the ICU too. They made me sign to declare that I would keep him in the room with my own understanding.
After his death, we had to pay the hospital bill running in lakh and were not given any medical records on the pretext that they would be examined by a committee. However, we smuggled a few last X Rays of him. We did contemplate taking legal action against the hospital for their superficial approach to treatment of a chronic sickness. However, we gave up, because as the only child, my sadness after my father's loss was too great and I felt that the callous and insincere ways of those private moneymaking businessmen doctors could not be changed.
However, I not only support your initiative, but also can share all the details, in order to expose the shrouded cruelty of these doctors who have made a mockery of the oath of hypocrites and are only after money. You can go to the site of my father made in his memory: http://ajitpal.weebly.com/Tomorrow, you can call me up on 9350319102; day after tomorrow, I shall be available on my below-mentioned numbers. Today and tomorrow, you can speak to my wife Dr. Ritu Chowdhary at the below-mentioned numbers. Thank you for your attention,
Anadish K Pal 194,
Vaishali Pitampura, Delhi 110088
KINDLY KEEP MY IDENTITY /EMAIL-ID ANONYMOUS
There is an urgent need to strengthen our consumer protection system so that unethical / negligent doctors can be nailed. Senior cardiologist like Dr Ashok Seth should be in a position to give indubitable advised to his patients. Usually such senior doctors are part of the medical councils and often influence the decision against an aggrieved patient. Doctors supposedly the protectors have turned into the predators. Dr. Seth is negligent and should be brought to books. I would like to share my frightening experience with Cancer. The disease cancer spells: torturous treatment, astronomical expenditure and death in 95% of the diagnosed cases. Despite regular breakthrough in cancer research, cancer is neither curable nor controllable. If cancer is confirmed at an early stage, which is very uncommon, it is controllable for few years in some of the cases. Otherwise majority of the patients irrespective of their cancer staging will have recurrence within one or two years of treatment. Cancer doesn’t recognize financial status of the patients but 'DOCTOR DO'! Treatment is cost prohibitive since it requires multiple lines if treatment through overpriced life saving drugs. Oncologists are highly under the influence of inducements. They have preference for branded imported, so called the "wonder" drugs over Indian drugs. They try to mislead patients by promoting: "imported drugs to be more efficacious than the generic" for disease free survival. "They are researched products" "They have better formula!" Imported branded anti cancer drugs can be anywhere 5 to 100 times more expensive than Indian counterpart and I can't recall even once if we were ever recommended any generic formula! They try to act righteous with the gullible patients by offering them the direct contact numbers of the Medical Representatives. "Don't worry this person will offer you more discount than the other chemists". The hapless patients completely unaware of the fact that the moment they will make a purchase through the suggested dealer, a hefty incentive will go to the doctor. Strong presence of medical representatives is a common sight around the Doctors. Despite the fact that repeated cancer treatment is required by majority of the patient, doctors leave no chance to burn a hole in their pockets. Greed is setting in like pandemic amongst the medicos. I have witnessed many patients selling their property to pay for an exorbitant treatment and many with no alternative, leave the treatment in between. I was very distressed to see doctors often neglecting patients at night hours and under the pretext of infection, doctors in ICU often make merry behind the curtain. Since cancer is a very unpredictable disease, oncologists often get an easy refuge to conceal their negligence and lack of focus; they swiftly pass the buck to the disease. I am very sure if 65% of cancer patients die of the disease then the remaining 35% of patients die because of doctor's lackadaisical attitude. I have had first hand experience to this. Patients pay through their nose in hope of reliable treatment in private hospitals in return they are duped. Beyond doubt doctors in government hospitals like AIIMS have superior expertise but long waiting and poor setup prevents a common man to avail the facilities and push them to private hospitals. This is a gnawing concern. Our judicial system should take suo-moto control in such situations and enforce accountability on the part of the hospitals and the treating doctors and empower the consumer with prompt and fair complaint redressal system. Profit margins of life saving drugs should be controlled. Treatment should be affordable for everyone and not just for the poor patients. Our Doctors have lost ethics of their profession. If such issues are put under the scanner, I am very sure much more, appalling facts will be highlighted. You are requested to bring such issues into limelight and expose the money hungry and unscrupulous doctors.
This is regarding my elder sister, who is not married (aged 58 Years), was molested and sexually assaulted by a doctor, when she consulted him about four years back for the treatment of her urinary related ailment. The doctor, with the malicious intentions had molested and sexually assaulted her, firstly under the excuse of Urethral Dilatation and then under the excuse of Cystoscopy in connivance with his fellow colleagues.
Initially, the complaint was lodged with hospital management and then to the Delhi Medical Council and Medical Council of India. All the three agencies gave a verdict in the favour of the doctor without addressing the allegations levelled against the doctor in my complaint. Now, I want to challenge it in the Court of Law.
I am forwarding to you a brief write-up of the whole case for your consideration and requesting you to report the matter in your metro special, Delhi first, PRIVATE MIS-TREATMENT COLUMN, A FIVE-PART SERIES.
I was reading your article published today on how private hospitals treat patients. I just want to share my experience, which we had recently with Sir Ganga Ram Hospital. A week ago, my cousin met with an accident and we took him to Ganga Ram Hospital. He was very critical at that time and the people at the hospital refused to admit him till the time we deposit some money. We were in our night suites and told them that we will deposit the money at least you start treating him but they started shouting at us and even abusing .In the end we took him to nearby Jessa Ram hospital. I really appreciate your step torwards these private hospitals, which are all about money and hardly care about human life.
Thanks and Regards,