SevenHills Hospital in Marol, Mumbai has shut down its outpatient department (OPD) to save expenses as they battling a major financial crisis, they are likely to close down other sections of the hospitals in the days to come. On Tuesday, the management of SevenHills shut down OPD rooms after consulting the senior doctors. The senior doctors are on a strike over non-payment of pending dues since December 28 last year.

Currently, there are 15 patients admitted at the hospital and because of that it is likely that the hospital will shut down other services to save electricity, since they have defaulted on electricity bills running into crores. SevenHills Hospital’s vice-president Dr LP Sadhotra told Mumbai Mirror, “As our doctors are on a strike and is not doing OPD duty, there is no point in keeping it open. To save expenses towards electricity, we are shutting down those sections that are empty. Why waste energy unnecessarily?”

A senior doctor, who is on a strike, said that they got an email on Wednesday morning, asking them to vacate the OPD chambers in one hour. “We were told to remove our stuff from our OPD cabins as they will lock the rooms. Though we are on a strike, we were sitting in our rooms. But the management locked them. It is like telling us indirectly that we must leave the hospital.”

10 suppliers of medical devices and other equipment are also struggling to get paid by the hospital, so they have decided to stop the supply, which invariably has had an effect on surgeries and dialysis. Though the hospital had stopped admitting patients they were continuing with dialysis, but even that is expected to close sometime soon.

The hospital built on 17 acres of BMC land is close to the international airport in Andheri. It started out as huge facility accommodating over 1,500 beds. However, the authorities always maintained that they were operating in losses and eventually, the bed number came down to 306. The hospital was inaugurated by then president Pratibha Patil.

Earlier, Dr Ashok Asthana, medical director of SevenHills Hospital, had told Mumbai Mirror that the hospital’s lenders have moved the National Company Law Tribunal for insolvency proceedings. “We are waiting for the outcome. Once everything is in place, all dues will be cleared,” he had said on January 5. – Free Press Journal


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