Mumbai

Seven Hills medical superintendent quits; doctors’ strike continues

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Amidst the ongoing strike of doctors at the Seven Hills Hospital in Marol, its medical superintendent Rajendra Karwa has abruptly quit the organisation.

Dr. Karwa had worked with the hospital for 22 months and was instrumental in implementing the State government’s health scheme for the poor. His resignation is being seen as an attempt to downsize by the management, which has declared debt of $200 million and is awaiting orders from the National Company Law Tribunal, where its lenders have filed a case.

“There was some misunderstanding with the senior management members. I gave my resignation and they accepted it immediately without any notice period or dues held back,” Dr. Karwa told The Hindu, refusing to elaborate on the misunderstanding.

It was the State’s health scheme for the poor — the Rajiv Gandhi Jeevandayi Arogya Yojna, now known as the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana (MJPJAY) — that had kept the hospital going for the past two years. The hospital is said to have performed over 1,500 cardiac surgeries and 700 other surgeries under the scheme. “We were able to generate revenue of ₹30 crore through the optimally priced packages under the scheme”, said Dr. Karwa.

However since December 28 last year, the 50-odd full-time doctors stopped work due to non-payment of salaries for the past seven months. The strike has hit the MJPJAY patients badly, with many of them turned away for elective surgeries. At present, the hospital merely has around 10 admitted patients. The full-time doctors who have stopped work are only catering to emergency cases. A doctor who is on strike said there has not been much communication from the management.

Dr. Karwa said Seven Hills is a good hospital with state-of-the-art facilities. “I would be happy to work there again, provided a new management takes over,” he said.

He said the management has to put thought into roping in new private consultants who are well-known in the field. The marketing department needs fresh blood, and thought needs to be put in to promote medical tourism given the hospital’s close proximity to the airport. “An experienced team is the need of the hour,” he said.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2020 1:59:53 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/seven-hills-medical-superintendent-quits-doctors-strike-continues/article22445400.ece

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