When Hasan Chowdhury, a small trader, died at a private hospital in the capital after taking treatment for five days with Covid symptoms, his family found it next to impossible to get his body released by paying a hefty bill of over Tk 4 lakh.
The family received the second blow within a year as they had to take a loan last year after spending all the savings to bear the treatment cost of Chowdhury’s wife who had been suffering from kidney problems before she died fighting for life at a hospital for over a month.
As Chowdhury’s body was lying on a trolley of the hospital for a long time, the close relatives and all family members contributed and got it released and buried him, one of the brothers of the deceased told UNB narrating the ordeals their family went through to bear the treatment expenses.
“My brother was in his mid-70s and unwell. After his wife’s death last year, his health declined. As his condition worsened further with Covid-like symptoms, his son got an ambulance and tried to get him admitted to a public hospital. However, he failed to manage a bed in any such hospital, wasting several hours. Finally, he was taken to a private-bank-run hospital in Panthapath. He was immediately taken to the ICU,” he said.
He said Chowdhury was on a regular ICU regime but no major check-up was done. “After three days, when we insisted, a team of doctors saw him and recommended shifting him to a cabin from the ICU. A day later he was again taken to the ICU as his condition was stated to be critical and he eventually died in the ICU after two days.”
“We’re given a bill of over 4 lakhs for 5 days’ treatment. The body was refused to be released by the hospital as his family couldn’t raise the money immediately in a day. So, we all family members contributed and got his body discharged,” Chowdhury’s brother added.
Maksudur Rahman, a private company employee in the city’s Nakhalpara area, also became almost bankrupt after his wife and daughter received treatment for Covid in another private hospital.
“I was infected with Covid last year. Probably, I got it from my office. My wife and daughter got it from me. As their condition became serious, they were admitted to a private hospital. My sister-in-law who was taking care of them also became ill and was admitted to the same hospital,” said Maksud.