Bengaluru offers cheap wonder cures to rest of India
The city is turning into a mecca for patients from across India, with hospitals here clocking 70,000 to 1,20,000 patients a year.Sreemoyee Chatterjee.21 January 2016,.M. D. Hegde
source:ET HEALTH WORLD.
The city is turning into a mecca for patients from across India, with hospitals here clocking 70,000 to 1,20,000 patients a year. While West Bengal tops the list, people from Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Assam and Bihar are also flooding city hospitals.
Manipal Hospital, for instance, got 31,500 patients from Bengal, 24,500 patients from Odisha and 14,000 patients from Bihar in 2015. The National Institute of Mental and Neuro Sciences (Nimhans), Narayana Health, Apollo Hospitals, Fortis Hospitals, Kidwai Institute of Oncology and BGS Global Hospitals are most popular with out-station patients for their efficient and affordable healthcare facilities.
"The lack of the latest line of treatment, adequate beds in hospitals and multispecialty facilities in Kolkata and other states are among the principal reasons for this trend. Medical procedures coupled with the latest technologies drive most patients to Bengaluru. I have been visiting Kolkata once a month for the past 10 years for follow-up on patients who have undergone surgery in Bengaluru," said Dr RD Chakravarty, chief of joint replacement surgery at Manipal Hospital who sees around 15 outstation patients a day.
Renowned cardio surgeon Dr Devi Shetty said: "Around 67% of reputed medical colleges are in South India. It is easier to set up medical colleges in Bengaluru in particular, and South India in general. However, we do not have sufficient medical colleges in Bengal and other Northeastern states. With poor healthcare infrastructure, doctors from these states also migrate to the southern states. This draws patients from Bengal and other Northeastern states to Bengaluru. Moreover, patients get quality treatment here at reasonable cost. I learnt Bengali as did several other doctors from the South, so that patients don't face any trouble communicating." Dr Shetty, founder, Narayana Health, worked in Kolkata for several years.
Such is the influx that at Nimhans, nurses are trained to speak in Bengali so as to converse with patients, while Manipal Hospital has a separate reception to attend to only outstation patients. In fact, a number of hotels have mushroomed in the area behind Nimhans to cater to the teeming patients and their families.
Fortis Hospital on Bannerghatta Road treats at least 200 patients from Bengal a year, while Kidwai offered cancer cure to 568 patients from Bengal alone last year. Annually, 40% of the beds in special wards in Nimhans are occupied by Bengalis.
"Despite good neurologists practising in Kolkata, patients from Bengal are more confident about doctors here. We receive the maximum number of patients from Bengal and other Northeast states for psychiatry and neurological treatment. If you visit the dharamshala on our campus, you will find most of them are Bengalis. In fact, I encourage my doctors to learn and speak Bengali," said Dr Satish Chandra, former director at Nimhans.
"Bengaluru attracts patients from other states because of accessibility to world-class healthcare infrastructure, offering a wide range of specialized services and curing the most complicated disputes.The city is home to some of the best medical experts in the country," said Dr Vijay Vemuri, COO, BGS Global Hospitals.
Records reveal that maximum outstation patients visit cardiology, neurology, psychiatry, orthopaedic and oncology departments.
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