It is very unfortunate that the hospital staff are extorting poor patients at the National Institute of Traumatology and Orthopaedic Rehabilitation (Nitor), popularly known as Pangu Hospital, for getting a plaster or dressing. As a leading Bangla daily reported yesterday, patients are being charged three times the rate fixed by the hospital authorities for a plaster. And this is happening because the hospital authorities have stopped providing plasters and other necessary treatment materials for outdoor patients for quite some time. These patients now have to buy these treatment materials prescribed by the staff from shops. Also, allegations are rife against the hospital staff including nurses, ward boys and aayas of providing services in exchange for money. Patients can even get a quick appointment with a doctor by bribing the staff. Under such circumstances, poor patients are the worst sufferers.
We fail to understand why the hospital authorities have stopped providing patients with plasters and other materials. This has led to a serious problem, as we can see, and it must be solved immediately. Several reports have been published in newspapers in the past about the malpractices of hospital staff, and we believe, this time too, the authorities are not unaware about this situation. They must look into the allegations, punish those responsible and overhaul the whole system so that patients do not have to pay extra money to avail services.