HYDERABAD: It’s no news that bribery at government hospitals continues unabated in Hyderabad; in fact, it’s an age-old issue. Ward boys and hospital staff are known to take bribes from patients and their attendants. However, the menace has now spread to security guards employed by private contractors as well.
Patient attendants have complained of security guards not permitting family members of patients to enter wards unless they pay Rs 10-50. In fact, they even prevent attendants from using washrooms without a bribe and often behave rudely when they don’t pay up. A patient at Gandhi Hospital said: “From letting us enter the ward to getting our work done -- unless we cough up ‘chai-paani ka paisa’, nothing gets done here.” When Express visited Niloufer Hospital, the first-hand incident of bribery unfolded before us. A patient’s attendant had to pay Rs 10 to enter the premises of the new intensive care block.
Dr Murali Krishnan, superintendent of Gandhi Hospital, said: “We try to tackle these issues whenever we are notified. In the last couple of months we have relieved 4-5 personnel off their duties. We hold orientation sessions for them every morning.” B Prem Kumar, Deputy Director of Medical Education, said: “If the staff of the private company in question continue their actions, the tender for the next term can be revoked and the firm can be blacklisted as well.”