Doctors at Kanchi Kamakoti Childs trust raised Rs 18 lakh through crowdfunding to help pay a bill of Rs 34 lakh for a child battling pneumonia, dengue, infections and other complications for nearly two months. The child went home on Wednesday.
Saran was in the paediatric ICU for 57 days, connected to an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machine for 33 days (the machine helps the lungs rest and the body heal).
"The bill was mounting and the child was not recovering, but we decided not to give up. We decided that if parents can't pay, we'd crowdsource funds," said the hospital's chief intensivist, Dr Bala Ramachandran. "We tied up with agencies that help to crowd source funds in October," he said.
The boy's father, D Ashok Kumar, who works for a Korean manufacturing firm, said he was grateful to many who donated money for the treatment. "I used all my savings. My company gave me Rs 5 lakh and friends and family helped.".
The doctors managed to crowdsource about Rs 18 lakh, and convinced the ECMO manufacturer to give them a discount. The hospital also gave a concession and the doctors' fees came to Rs 60,000.
The child tested positive for dengue, and also had dengue haemorrhagic shock and infection. Sai had a 70% risk of mortality and needed dialysis.On October 31, doctors weaned him off the ECMO machine. He was on a ventilator for a few more days. On Wednesday, doctors declared him fit for discharge.
Detcare – the high bills are not the doctors earnings or fees, Doctors charges are very basic. The high bills are mainly the hospital bills, for the fact that critical care is very expensive because of the costly equipments, costly drugs, high end investigations and a lot of nursing and other manpower to manage.
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