Poonam Singh

The Odisha Health and Family Welfare Department (H&FW) has directed all state-run medical colleges and hospitals for strict monitoring and crackdown on brokers or middlemen indulged in diverting patients to private clinics and hospitals from the Out Patient Departments (OPDs) of government hospitals across the State.

“It has come to notice that some unwanted elements are operating in the premises of high case load Government hospitals, in the guise of helping patients coming from far-flung areas to locate the OPDs,” the health department said in a letter.

Reportedly, the brokers often allegedly persuade patients to seek treatment in private clinics on the false information that there is no proper medical facility available at the government hospitals. 

“You are, therefore, requested to alert all faculties, treating doctors, paramedics, and other staff of the Government hospitals to exercise strict vigil in the matter and take immediate remedial measures upon noticing any such activity in the premises of -Government hospitals," Health department Commissioner-Cum Secretary Shalin Pandit told Dean & Principal/Superintendent of all Government Medical College and Hospitals, CDM & PHOs.

"The station in charge of the local Police Station may be promptly intimated about the matter for the detention of such elements and initiation of appropriate legal action against them,” she wrote.

The health department also asked the concerned authorities to initiate necessary administrative actions under CCA Rules apart from appropriate legal action in case any faculty, treating doctor, paramedic, and any other staff of the Government hospital is found operating in participation with such elements and/or aiding and abetting them.

Also, it has been instructed to take immediate steps to put in place proper signboards in Odia and English from the point of entry to the hospital, giving clear directions/route charts to the location of various OPD Departments. The name of the OPD in Odia and English should be displayed in front of each OPD of different treating Departments for the knowledge of patients and their relatives.

(Reported By Harihar Chand)