Coronavirus Pandemic

India: Hospital offers gifts to people who take Covid vaccination

Web report/Bathinda
Filed on June 24, 2021
AFP file photo

Gifts include 43-inch smart TV and a refrigerator.

Getting Covid vaccinations is a major challenge for most people across India, with a massive rush at hospitals, lack of adequate doses and long queues at the facilities. But a hospital in Bathinda, Punjab, has tied up with an NGO and is offering gifts as incentives to people to get themselves vaccinated.

The Kishori Ram hospital along with the Noujawan Welfare Society is offering ten prizes through lucky draws to people who get vaccinated, said Dr Vittul Gupta of the hospital. On Wednesday, 121 people got vaccinated and were given the coupons.

Included in the prize are a 43-inch smart LED TV and a 185-l refrigerator. A government health team visits the hospital to vaccinate patients.

Private hospitals in Bathinda and other cities in Punjab are accused of fleecing Covid patients, charging hefty amounts for registration and treatments. A news report quoted a doctor who said daily expenses of level-2 and level-3 patients at private hospitals add up to almost Rs50,000 a day. Worse, many hospitals do not give receipts for the payments.

But hospitals that provide free treatment to Covid patients are discouraged from doing so, according to local leaders. Prof Baljinder Kaur, a legislator of the Aam Aadmi Party, said by not allowing the Kishori Ram hospital to provide free treatment to patients was a demonstration of the government’s insensitivity to the poor.

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