NEW DELHI: At a time when the Centre has declared (in the Union Budget) its intent to hand over district government hospitals to private players — a move also advocated by its top think-tank Niti Aayog — the story of takeover of a cardiac centre in Chhattisgarh capital Raipur by the government from a private group has grabbed the eyeballs.
The unique case of Advanced Cardiac Institute, which was run by Escorts Heart Institute-Delhi (later taken over by Fortis group) from 2002 to 2017 and has now been taken back by Pt Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Government Medical College, is likely to be a case study in India’s top B-School- Indian Institute of Management- Ahmedabad.
The development comes following a presentation given on the centre’s journey at the 5th International Conference on Advances in Health Systems and Management, organised by IIM-A last Sunday. The ‘success story’ presented said the state government had given Escorts a one-time grant of `11 crore and a building within the medical college while signing a MoU which stipulated that 15 per cent of beds will have to be kept for poor patients and the centre will require to train government doctors and other staff in cardiology.
“None of these conditions in the agreement were ever fulfilled. The contract, however, was renewed twice as there were neither trained cardiologists nor any heart hospital in the state,” said Dr Smit Srivastava, a cardiologist who is now in-charge of the centre and the man behind the presentation. Parallelly, a cath lab was also set up in the medicine department of the medical college in 2009 and in 2010, Srivastava was sent to the PGI-Chandigarh to get a super-specialty degree in cardiology with the condition that upon return, he will have to serve the institute.
“Our centre had been doing good. As we saw that the centre run by the private hospital was largely concentrating on revenue generating procedure angioplasty, while most other patients were turned down, we convinced the government not to renew the MoU in 2017 and have been running it successfully since then,” Dr Srivastava said. With the help of other trained support staff and junior residents, he has been doing all possible cardiac interventions, from basic to advanced and complex on patients of all ages and income groups free of cost.
Dr Rajesh Chandwani, chair of centre for management of health services at IIM-A, said the turnaround of the ACI was a very “interesting case”. “We will seek permission from the Chhattisgarh government to register it as a case study at our institute as the story of an unsuccessful partnership between the state and a private player which could have lessons for future PPP models,” Dr Chandwani said.
The case of Advanced Cardiac Institute, run by Escorts Heart Institute-Delhi from 2002 to 2017, is likely to be a case study in India’s top B-School- Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad