NHRC issues notices to Chief Secretaries of Bihar and Rajasthan over allegations of unnecessary hysterectomies under RSBY

New Delhi, 18th June, 2013

The National Human Rights Commission has taken suo motu cognizance of a media report alleging that a large number of hysterectomies are being carried out on unsuspecting women who throng the hospitals for even the minor ailments such as stomachache or menstrual problems in Samastipur District of Bihar and Dausa District of Rajasthan. Hysterectomy costs the highest of all the procedures under Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojna (RSBY), which entitles families below poverty line for free treatment up to Rs.30000/- a year. Therefore, allegedly, greedy doctors conduct this procedure to siphon off public money.
The Commission has issued a notice, returnable in four weeks, to the Chief Secretaries of Governments of Bihar and Rajasthan calling for a factual report and the action they propose to take in the matter.
Reportedly, in Samastipur District of Bihar, out of 14,851 procedures were conducted under RSBY between 2010 and 2012, 5503 were hysterectomies. The Expert Medical Team, constituted by the District Magistrate, found several cases wherein hysterectomies were not required. It was also found that the hospitals simply swiped the RSBY cards and never conducted the procedures.
In Dausa District of Rajasthan, many FIRs were lodged against the doctors. Allegedly, the officials have been sympathetic towards the doctors. The report also discloses collusion of private hospitals with the Government health practitioners in the rural health centers, who are promised commission on referrals. Reportedly, the employees at Government Hospitals even act as agents and take patients to private clinics.