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Jharkhand, pvt hospitals to halt Ayushman admissions over non-payment of dues

The private hospitals in various districts of Jharkhand might stop admitting patients under the Central government’s Ayushman Bharat free treatment scheme over the non-payment of bills by the state government. On Sunday, the association of private hospitals in Jharkhand issued a public notification expressing its inability to treat the patients under the health scheme and pleaded the authorities to clear the pending dues.

Dhanbad has already refused to admit patients under the Ayushman Bharat free treatment scheme over the non-payment of dues. The beneficiaries of the scheme are suffering in Jharkhand as the private hospitals are turning them away after not being paid their outstanding dues.

For the unversed, the beneficiaries of the Ayushman Bharat scheme can avail cashless treatment at private hospitals and the state government clears the dues. But the private hospitals in the state have alleged that the state government has not cleared the pending dues, compelling them to resort to such strict measures.

On Sunday, a public notification was published in newspapers on behalf of the Indian Medical Association (Jharkhand chapter) and the Hospital Board of India (HBIJ), Jharkhand. The private healthcare institutes claimed that they have not received money since September, 2021 and the state health department has not paid the bills.

Hospitals stop admission
Dr Shambhu, the president of the IMA, said, “The beneficiaries have been availing the Ayushman Bharat scheme in a hassle-free manner since the past three years. But private hospitals have not received their pending dues since September, 2021. Around 3 lakh people from across the state avail the Ayushman Bharat scheme and avail the cashless treatment at the hospitals due to which many of them now are in a dire financial crisis. Many hospitals in Godda, Giridih and Garhwa districts have stopped admitting patients under the Ayushman Bharat free treatment scheme.”

He further added, “IMD Jharkhand and HBIJ will disclose their strategy on this issue on April 23.”

Locals claimed though IMA may grant a seven-day deadline, many small and other private hospitals in Ranchi have stopped admitting patients, including those needing dialysis, under the Ayushman Bharat free treatment scheme.

Districts such as Dhanbad, Godda, Giridih, Ranchi, Garhwa, Hazaribag have stopped cashless treatment under the scheme and are not admitting patients to the hospitals due to the financial crunch.

On the other hand, the Executive Director of the scheme’s nodal body in the state said that they have released Rs 170 crore to the insurance companies concerned. He said that the insurance companies have also given Rs 30 crore to the hospitals in lieu of medical treatment.

The President of Association of Healthcare Providers in India (AHPI), Jharkhand, Yogesh Gambhir, said, “Many organisations have met the state health minister Batra Gupta and have kept forward their demands. They have demanded restoration of the payment cycle in fifteen days, no harassment by TPAs by unnecessary queries and no threats of fines or suspension by the government on flimsy grounds.” India Today

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