Mumbai: SBTC to hold meeting with blood banks on overcharging issue

The State Blood Transfusion Council (SBTC) is soon going to hold a meeting with 22 private blood banks in Mumbai to enquire why people are being overcharged when there us a fixed rate put in place by the state government 

Image Source: Google
Image Source: Google

Earlier a unit of blood used to cost Rs 1,050 at government-run hospitals, but they then reduced this amount by 200 Rupees, hence, now the current amount for a unit of blood at such hospitals are at Rs 850. Private hospitals charge Rs 1,450 for a unit of blood but they tend to overcharge people

In December 2017, blood banks in Mumbai were investigated by the SBTC and Maharashtra Food and Drug administration (FDA). During the course of the investigation they realised that private blood banks overcharged the patients who are in dire need of blood.

The FDA survey revealed:

  • No registrations for blood bags.
  • Additional charges for blood transfusion.
  • Lack of blood transfusion officers.

While speaking to My Medical Mantra, Dr Arun Thorat, assistant director, SBTC, “We had held a survey/ investigation with the help of FDA in Mumbai in December last year. We came to know that patients are being fleeced by blood banks. 22 private blood banks in Mumbai are overcharging patients. We will soon ask them why they are overcharging patients.”

FDA Joint Commissioner (headquarters) and state drug controller Amrut Nikhade, said, “The state government has decided to rate the rate of processing charge for blood, but it has come to light that private blood banks are overcharging patients.”

Chetan Kothar, an RTI activist said, “At times, the blood banks tend to overcharge people. The FDA receives complains about this time and again. It acted on these complains and investigated blood banks in December 2017 in Mumbai and adjoining areas. The FDA had confiscated licenses of 9 blood banks. Many were sent show cause notices to which they responded. The SBTC will soon have a meeting to question the blood banks and ask thwm why they are overcharging patients.”