Delhi Mohalla clinics scam: Centre orders CBI probe into allegations of fake tests, ghost patients

Delhi govt's probe found discrepancies in data relating to over 11,000 patients

AAP Mohalla clinics Representational image

The Centre ordered CBI on Friday to probe alleged irregularities in Delhi's Mohalla clinics. Lt Governor V.K. Saxena had on Thursday recommended a probe following reports of fake tests and ghost patients at the clinics.

The flagship healthcare scheme of Aam Aadmi Party ran into controversy following reports of doctors recommending pathology and radiology tests allegedly with fake data. According to reports, a recent investigation by Delhi’s vigilance and health departments into lab investigations outsourced to private diagnostic companies found patient data being duplicated and use of non-existent, fake mobile phone numbers to register patients. The probe also found that at certain clinics, doctors manipulated attendance data, they marked present while the doctors actually did not report for duty on the day.

The probe team reviewed sample lab testing data for three months -July to September last year- retrieved from two private service providers and found discrepancies in details of over 11,000 patients. A source in the know of developments told PTI, "It was found that fake or non-existent mobile numbers were used for registration of patients and subsequent lab tests that were supposedly done on them. Also, there was duplication of mobile numbers. The data has clearly revealed that fake lab tests were carried out at these mohalla clinics that need to be further inquired.”

According to the inquiry report, there were 3,092 records of different patients with the same mobile number--9999999999--while in the case of 999 patients, their mobile numbers were repeated 15 or more times. Similarly, 11,657 patients had the mobile number zero registered against their names while in the case of 8,251 patients, the mobile number column was left blank. As many as 400 patients had a single-digit phone number.

The Lt Governor had earlier recommended a probe into alleged distribution of substandard drugs to Delhi government hospitals.

Delhi Health Minister Saurabh Bharadwaj had said on Thursday that the health secretary should be suspended for alleged wrongdoings.

"As far as the health department is concerned, or mohalla clinics, drugs, and whether the standard is good or not, or if anyone is entering a phone number or entering random digits, or some wrong number (at mohalla clinics), this has to be checked by officials, and they have a DGHS above and above that health secretary is there. It is their job to do random checks at their level,” he had said.

“Who has appointed the DGHS? not us. Who has appointed the health secretary? not us. Who has chosen them, you all know. People chosen by them (for these posts) are committing wrong things. And, they themselves are probing it,” Bharadwaj charged. 

-with PTI inputs.


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