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  Delhi HC orders free treatment for Hepatitis B patient

Delhi HC orders free treatment for Hepatitis B patient

AGE CORRESPONDENT
Published : Nov 29, 2015, 3:35 am IST
Updated : Nov 29, 2015, 3:35 am IST

The Delhi high court has directed the Delhi government-run Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences to provide free treatment to 27-year-old Hanuman, a patient of Hepatitis B Surface Antigen (HBsAG).

The Delhi high court has directed the Delhi government-run Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences to provide free treatment to 27-year-old Hanuman, a patient of Hepatitis B Surface Antigen (HBsAG). The patient has filed a writ petition in the high court, seeking directions against the institute to provide him free treatment without insisting upon the production of National Food Security Card as proof of his economic background.

Before directing the Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences to provide the patient free treatment, the high court had asked the institute, Union health ministry and R.M.L. Hospital to file their responses to the petition.

“Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw, while disposing of the writ petition, has directed the ILBS to provide free treatment to the patient. The court also directed area SDM to issue income certificate to Hanuman in regard to his EWS (economically weaker section) status and on production thereof, the institute shall provide him free treatment,” said advocate Ashok Agarwal, who filed the petition on behalf of Hanuman.

The patient resides in a Badli slum with his family — wife, three-year-old son and one-year-old daughter. He used to earn between Rs 100 and Rs 150 per day by helping with stitching at a shop.

On April 16, 2014 he was found to be suffering from the Hepatitis B Surface Antigen (HBsAg) disease. On August 21 this year, the petitioner approached Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital for treatment. The hospital referred him to the Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences in Vasant Kunj for further treatment and also recommended complete check-up of his family members. The petitioner thereafter, on September 7, approached the institute for treatment. However, the institute refused to provide him free treatment and asked him to pay for the treatment.

According to Mr Agarwal, Hanuman produced a copy of his father’s BPL card (original deposited with the food and supplies department, Delhi) and made a request to provide him free treatment as he was unable to pay any amount and moreover, offered to give a self-declaration to the director of the institute that his family income from all sources was less than Rs 1 lakh per annum. However, the institute arbitrarily and erroneously declined to provide him free treatment, the advocate said.

“The denial of free treatment to the poor patient, Hanuman, by the ILBS is a violation of fundamental and constitutional rights to life and health of the petitioner, as guaranteed to him by the Constitution of India,” added Mr Agarwal.

Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi