SC stays distribution of hospital users’ feesStaff Correspondent
The Appellate Division on Wednesday stayed until September 26 a High Court order that asked government hospital authorities to distribute funds accumulated out of fees paid by users among the doctors, medical technologists and other staffers within 30 days.
According to media reports government hospitals across the country collected Tk 200 crore as users’ fees from 2009 to 2011.
On hearing the news of the stay Dhaka Medical College Hospital on Wednesday afternoon distributed Tk 14 crore it collected as users’ fees from 2009 to 2011.
The Appellate Division vacation judge-in-chamber Justice Hasan Foez Siddique issued the stay order after hearing a petition filed by Co-ordinate committee of clinical society, Bangladesh Nurses Association, third class employees’ welfare association, health department officers-employees Shonjukta Parishad against the order the High Court gave on July 23.
The apex court judge set the matter for hearing by a regular Appellate Division bench on September 23.
The High Court gave the directive for the distribution of users’ fees following a writ petition from DMCH Radiology and Imaging Department’s medical technologist, Md Sirajul Islam, challenging the legality of a July 14 health ministry notification that had suspended distribution of users’ fees until further order.
The stay order from the Appellate Division would prevent distribution of the funds accumulated out fess realized by government hospitals from patients for pathological tests, x-ray, ECG, physiotherapy, radio therapy, blood transfusion and other patient services, appellants’ lawyer Abdul Kamal Azad told New Age.
He said that the government hospitals realized Tk 200 crore as users’ fees.
DMCH alone realized Tk 14 crore, he said.
The government, in a gazette notified on January 7, 2010, that the users’ fees would be distributed among all employees and staffers of its hospitals.
Following a public interest litigation writ petition, the High Court on January 23, 2012, declared the realization of the users’ fees as illegal and prohibited the practice.
On February 19, 2012, Appellate Division’s chamber judge stayed the High Court order and allowed government hospitals to charge users’ fees.
There is a resentment among medical technologists and other staffers over the practice of distribution of 50 per cent of the collected fees among the doctors of the concerned departments.
The technologists of the concerned departments have been demanding restoration of a previous government order for the distribution of the users’ fees among them as they are directly exposed to risks for carrying out the tests.
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