Will devise mechanism for grievances redressal of over-charging by hospitals: SC

Advocate Krishna Ballabh Thakur, appearing for petitioner Abhinav Thapar, said that a lot of difficulties were faced by the patients during the pandemic as many hospitals and doctors overcharged them.

The Supreme Court on Friday said that it will devise a mechanism for redressal of grievances concerning overcharging of expenses by hospitals and doctors from Covid-19 patients during the second wave of the pandemic.

A bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and BV Nagarathna while issuing notice to the Centre said, “We will devise a mechanism to deal with such grievances”.

Advocate Krishna Ballabh Thakur, appearing for petitioner Abhinav Thapar, said that a lot of difficulties were faced by the patients during the pandemic as many hospitals and doctors overcharged them.

The bench said, “We understand the problem. Don’t worry, we will do something.” Thapar in his plea has said that direction be issued to the Centre to form a committee at the state and district level to scrutinise and audit the medical bills and the expenses over-charged from Covid-19 patients and their families.

He also sought direction from the Centre and state governments to direct the hospitals and doctors under their jurisdiction to refund the over-charged amount of such patients or if they have died then it should be paid to their nearest family member.

“There is no uniform policy and guidelines till date regarding the refund of exorbitant amount overcharged from patients either at the state level or central level and Covid-19 patients and their families are left at the mercy of private hospitals, which have been exploiting the global pandemic…”, the plea said.

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