Name: mohammed nadeem ahmed
Date of admission: 25th june, 2019
Reason for surgery: obstructed hernia
Insurance coverage: rs. 3, 00, 000
Actual cost of treatment: rs. 8, 95, 399
Average cost of hernia operation: rs. 1, 05, 000 (Approx.)
A 14 day ordeal of a minor umbilical hernia operation which turned to death and the greedy side of fortis increasing the charges for insurance claims and escalating the charges by up to 100% claiming for gipsa. Details attached with proof of invoice. Total bill for umbilical hernia operation was rs. 8, 95, 399. Fortis did not allow us to take the body without clearing inflated bills.
Day 1 – 25th june 2019
• i had taken my father in emergency to fortis hospital, bannerghatta road, bangalore, as he was complaining of a severe abdominal pain caused by an umbilical hernia.
• as my father was covered by a corporate medical insurance, we opted for a cashless payment. Despite having an approved insurance he was refused admission stating that we have to pay rs. 80, 000 as down payment for the surgery. After speaking to the manager-in-charge i was made to write and sign a document stating that if the insurance does not pay the amount we would have to pay the hospital fees after which he was admitted and his operation was scheduled for the 26th june at 5:30 am.
Day 2 & 3 – 26th & 27th june 2019
• after his operation he was shifted to the icu for a day and after that to the ward where he faced problems in breathing due to shortage of oxygen supply which was supposed to be administered to him immediately after his movement to ward – failure by the hospital to adhere to the basic requirement. Despite having being notified by the doctor beforehand to administer continuous oxygen to avoid complications post op.
• he was shifted back to the icu where he remained there for another 4 days.
Day 4 – 7 – 28th june to 2nd july
• after the 3rd day in icu, seeing his improvement, he was scheduled to be shifted to the ward, but the hospital kept delaying it stating that they don’t have any empty wards.
• on the 6th day after being shifted to the ward he was doing fine, but on the 7th day at the time of his discharge, while changing the dressing, the doctor noticed a suspicious discharge and informed us that there is a leakage in the abdomen and has to undergo another surgery immediately.
• during the operation, the surgeon discovered an abdominal burst caused by the rupture of the stitches of the 1st operation. This was due to excessive cough (Caused by shortage of oxygen) and being overweight – failure by the surgeon to provide a warning/instruction to the family and hospital staff.
Day 8 – 14 3rd to 8th july
• after a successful second operation he was shifted to the icu, where he was on a ventilator and cpap machine. He was in the icu for a duration of 7 days. We were clearly against him being on a ventilator but the doctors kept insisting for him to be on it.
• on day 12 in the after consulting the surgeon, they had the ventilator removed immediately. The hospital postponed shifting to the ward stating that they are out of wards and also it being a saturday, the senior doctors would be unavailable, thus being unsafe for the patient.
• on day 14 at 11:00 in the night he was shifted to the ward and on day 15 at 5:30 am his bp dropped and he passed away.
• despite having being notified by the doctor beforehand to administer continuous oxygen to avoid complications post op.
• despite being kept in the icu, his physical appearance deteriorated considerably resulting in us (Family) panicking and scheduling a time to speak with the surgeon on the state of his progress. As usual we were asked not to worry and that his progress is on track and he will be discharged shortly.
Below are the concerns requiring immediate addressal:
Every single day we enquired about his progress and we were informed that his health and vitals were on track and was making good progress and there was absolutely nothing to worry about.
• post the second operation, he had a host of blood tests and most importantly all his vital organs were checked (Lungs, kidneys & heart) and were found to being perfect condition.
• how can a common and minor operation such as a hernia surgery result in patient’s death and that too by a top hospital like fortis?! Is it medical negligence or the greed of the doctors where they wanted to make more money by putting him on ventilator and cpap. When he was in the icu he was continuously administered oxygen why wasn’t he given oxygen in the ward. Every doctor blames the other doctor. The emergency doctor stated death was caused due to infection in the stomach due to surgery. The surgeon states that everything was fine. So what went wrong and who are to blame? It’s about time fortis owns up and take responsibility for their negligent behavior towards the patient.
• during our time of grief, multiple calls were made by the hospital to clear the pending payment despite us informing of a shortage of funds. Is money the only factor behind running fortis? This seems to have surpassed a patient’s life! Emotional torture seems to come naturally to fortis.
• refusal to release the deceased due to non – payment of pending hospital fee and threatening by the hospital to move the body to the morgue till bill settlement. Body released post multiple calls/requests by the family regarding funeral and shortage of funds. Despite having a bill passed by the government that hospitals cannot holdback a deceased patient due to non – payment of bills. How can fortis fail to adhere to this rule? Please refer: www.indiatimes.com/amp/news/india/hospitals-now-cannot-hold-dead-bodies-hostage-…⇄
• for the shoddy and inhumane handling of this case and exorbitant money charged by fortis, we have to be compensated as seen fit.
• hike in prices:
1. Icu charges – increased from rs. 7500 to rs. 8900 claiming gipsa (General insurers' public sector association) increased rates – bills attached.
2. Bedside procedure – increased on a day on day basis – bills attached.
3. Physiotherapy charges – rs. 660 to rs. 1060 – bills attached.
4. Doctor consultations – rs 600/day to rs. 1000/day – bills attached.
5. Basic hospital charges – rs. 98, 000 to rs. 1, 34, 650 – bills attached.
6. X-ray charges – rs. 410 to rs.980 – bills attached.
7. Microbiology – bills attached.
8. 38 cannula’s given in bill for 14 days. Why?
• an average cost of a hernia surgery in bangalore in different hospitals is as follows:
1. Apollo hospital – umbilical hernia – open surgery – private ward rs. 1, 20, 000
2. Aster cmi hospital – private ward – including surgery, bed charges, consultation fees etc. Rs. 1, 04, 000
3. Manipal hospital – twin sharing – 5 days rs. 1, 00, 100
As seen above, fortis seems to be running only a business purely for profit and has along the way forgotten that the health and well-being of its patients. The charges made by the hospital defies logic and explanation and is certainly has not been set for the average indian consumer. We are awaiting a response and resolution from fortis for cheating us for a minor hernia operation.