Experts suspect scam in e-hospital scheme

Experts suspect scam in e-hospital scheme

Experts suspect irregularities in the purchase of equipment for implementation of the state government’s e-hospital scheme.

Under the scheme, an integrated hospital management software is utilised for various aspects of hospital management including patient details and registration, doctors’ appointments, billing among others.

The purchase of equipment at almost twice the cost of those available in the open market and hurry in which tenders have been floated have raised doubts over the way the scheme has been implemented.

The responsibility of putting in place the scheme in government hospitals had been entrusted to a Bengaluru-based private firm in March this year. The work order specified purchases to the tune of Rs 34.35 crore under various heads.

However, experts in the field are of the opinion that the government could have saved Rs 10 crore if the equipment had been purchased in the open market.

For instance, experts point out there was a requirement for 350 tablets under the scheme. SM-T 355 model tablets are available in the market at Rs 16,000 per unit. However, the tablets were purchased at a cost of Rs 29,427 each.

Similarly, HP ScanJet Pro 2500 scanners are available in the market at Rs 30,000 per unit, but they were purchased at a cost of Rs 46,000 each.
Health and Family Welfare Minister K R Ramesh Kumar was not available for comments despite repeated attempts.

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