Post Mortem

NPRAAF response to CIHSR

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 9/9/2019 10:21:35 AM IST

 Nagaland Public Rights Awareness and Action Forum (NPRAAF) appreciate Dr Sedevi Angami for making an effort to respond to NPRAAF press release on Saturday as an employee physician of the Referral Hospital. Even though he is the director of the hospital, it would have been more appropriate if, the EHA or the Christian Institute of Health Sciences Research (CIHSR) board speaks out as and when issue comes out in public domain vis-a-vis the hospital. 

It should be clearly understood that, CIHSR is the name of the registered society which runs the Referral Hospital. CIHSR is not the hospital in itself and the doctors by designation, contractual or otherwise and other technical and non technical staffs of the hospital is employees of the CIHSR. 

It is very unfortunate to hear from Dr Sedevi that, “seeking profit does not mean commercializing” if so, what is commercializing without profit.  NPRAAF would like to reiterate its earlier statement that, Referral Hospital rates are lower in comparison to other private hospitals. However, the rates should be made more affordable to the poor patients as the hospital is a venture of EHA, CMC Vellore and Govt. of Nagaland without profit motive as enshrined in the tripartite MoU. It is even more appalling and authoritative for Dr Sedevi to say govt must pay subsidy if the CIHSR makes treatment rates more affordable for poor before even the CIHSR board take cognizance of NPRAAF observation.  

Dr Sedevi specifically pointed out that, Rs,100  per patient is charged for new outpatient consultation without subsidy from external source, just to give the impression that, the hospital is doing great service to the poor patient, however, treatment rates does not only mean consultation fee alone. There are various health investigation charges including Room rent which requires to be made affordable for poor patients. It is worth mentioning that, a green card is also issued to patient with a charge of Rs 250 for outpatient for priority consultation by the referral hospital. 

Dr Sedevi further added that, staggering Rs.3 crores is spent every year on charity purpose besides subsidizing for poor patient and poor patient bills are written off every day is quite astonishing. NPRAAF will find out the truth of the claim at larger public interest soon. NPRAAF finds it interesting that, a charitable hospital serving the patients without profit, gives away 3 crores from its annual profit for charity. If the charitable hospital is serving the patients without profit than where is the profit coming from to give away to charity.

CIHSR is making profit as was apparent from Dr Sedevi statement itself therefore, NPRAAF demanded to the government to rectify the MoU to make both EHA and CMC accountable for any financial mismanagement besides the state govt, as all the 3 party are signatory to the MoU and are jointly running the CIHSR. and unless CIHSR is a private property there is no harm in rectifying or deleting the clause 1.(j) of the MoU at larger interest which states that, *All legal and financial liabilities that might arise in running of CIHSR will be that of the society.

It is unwarranted for the doctor to say that there is no need to rectify the MoU as president of the society (CIHSR) is the chief secretary of Nagaland. NPRAAF fails to understand why the state govt in the CIHSR team should be alone made accountable for any financial mismanagement. This raised doubt that the MoU was hastily and trickily drafted.

The response from Dr Sedevi also stated that, only 40% of the patients are from Assam, however he has not accounted patients from other neighboring states besides Assam. NPRAAF is happy that, more patients are coming from outside the states but it will be imperative for the hospital management to take steps to benefit more of local patients in the years to come.

NPRAAF would like to clarify that, number of employment in the Referral hospital given out by NPRAAF was based on information made available through source and does not include all the menial workers and even though 400 employed are from Nagaland not all are Nagas even as it claimed. Having said that, NPRAAF would certainly appreciate if the figure given out by the doctor is valid.  

It is more important to address the issues NPRAAF raised than merely justify everything by confusing and misleading the Nagas who are primary stakeholders of the hospital. 

NPRAAF on record would also like to clarify that, the CIHSR, as document made available to the high court in 2006 is managed by 7 (seven) members board of directors headed by; (1) Dr. Vargese EHA as chairman board of director (2) Dr PK John EHA (3) Dr B Langkham EHA (4) Secretary Health & Family Welfare Govt of Nagaland (5) Director H&FW Govt of Nagaland (6) Dr Lionel Gnanaraj CMC Vellore (7) Mr Collin Timms Banker. 

There are only 2 (two) members in the board of director to CIHSR as evident in the above mentioned list unless more added during the course of years. Therefore to say it has equal representation and voting decide matters relating to hospital would be utterly wrong. 

NPRAAF however, appreciates Dr Sedevi for admitting that, INR 4,012.92 Lakh amount was used in constructing and re-constructing buildings, buying hospital equipment and so on which made amply clear that, EHA and CMC Vellore did not invest even a rupee in the hospital besides getting the land free of cost. And therefore, the hospital must work with a philanthropic mind and not for profit. 

The CIHSR must not shift responsibility nor blame the govt. for its wrong management or any financial liabilities that may arise in running of the hospital as the govt has in faith release responsibility to EHA and CMC Vellore by giving away free assets. Even as Govt of Nagaland nominated 2 members in the CIHSR to protect its interest. 

NPRAAF would like, Dr Sedevi to take note on record that, NPRAAF does not question the integrity of the serving Doctors or the staffs at hospital nor the health care initiatives of the Referral hospital elsewhere and therefore it is not right to project the issue like NPRAAF is aggrieved with the doctors. NPRAAF only said that, referral hospital should not be commercialized and  EHA and CMC Vellore should also be made accountable for financial mismanagement and affordable rates for treatment should be made available for poor patient.     

NPRAAF raised the issue as a vigilant and conscience public forum desiring to see only systematically functioning of the hospital at the larger interest of the patients and does not expect the hospital doctors to engage in confrontation with any organisation.

NPRAAF expects CIHSR to take the forum observation in the right spirit and make effort to serve the poor patients, which will go a long way. NPRAAF will support and cooperate with the CIHSR for any positive change it undertakes. However, NPRAAF will continue to remain vigilant to ensure that, all is well in the CIHSR at the service of the poor patients of the state. 

Information and Publicity Wing NPRAAF, Dimapur

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