The management of Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS) has virtually scuttled the proposal of the Central Government Health Services (CGHS) authorities to set up exclusive facilities for its beneficiaries at the institute.

Curiously, the proposal, which could have brought the much-needed relief to CGHS beneficiaries who currently spend four days frequenting between CGHS dispensaries and NIMS, has found no takers at NIMS.

In fact, the NIMS management has made it clear to CGHS that it cannot provide exclusive access to specialist doctors for CGHS beneficiaries.

Proposal falls through

In October, the CGHS authorities had met their counterparts at NIMS with a proposal to set up a special block with dedicated senior doctors who would hold exclusive outpatient services for CGHS patients.

The proposal, which was accepted in principle by both the parties, was to set up exclusive outpatient and diagnostic facilities at least once or twice a week at NIMS.

The NIMS Trauma Centre was tentatively earmarked for such a facility, which also promised to reduce the consultation fee for CGHS beneficiaries at NIMS evening clinics to Rs. 150 from the existing Rs. 300.

The idea was to provide cashless treatment to CGHS beneficiaries.

“The NIMS management is finding it difficult to allocate specialist doctors exclusively for CGHS beneficiaries. We are now requesting them to at least provide quick diagnostic services for our patients,” AD, CGHS, Hyderabad, Dr. P. Parthasarathy said.

Procedural delay

Presently, the CGHS beneficiaries need four days to fully avail of the specialised diagnostic facilities like CT and MRI scans at NIMS. As for non-specialised medical facilities like outpatient services and simple diagnostic tests, pensioners end up spending one full day along with other general patients at the NIMS outpatient wing.

In case of medical emergencies, CGHS beneficiaries have to pay medical bills upfront at NIMS and later claim through reimbursement from CGHS. For diagnostic tests like CT and MRI scans, CGHS patients have to submit a referral letter from the local CGHS dispensary to NIMS. After that, they have to collect the doctor’s prescription of NIMS and submit to CGHS dispensary for approval.

“We are trying to convince NIMS authorities to ease out the process of diagnostic services. This will be of great help for CGHS beneficiaries. There is no point in patients moving frequently between CGHS clinics and NIMS to get their tests done,” says Dr. Parthasarathy.

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