Private hospitals cashing in on treatment of male diseases #China Newsweek#-Sino-US


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Private hospitals cashing in on treatment of male diseases #China Newsweek#
Private hospitals run by investors from Putian, Fujian province, have become gold sucking black holes for treating male diseases of young men.
 
Using tricks or psychological pressure on the private diseases, they have victimized many young men who come from impoverished families through an agreeable trap. 
 
While receiving treatment in the profit-hungry Putian-style private hospitals, these young men might face many traps, and sometimes, death due to the treatment.
 
Though the death of a young man called Wei Zexi, who died of a rare cancer, has aroused people’s attention to the Putian-style private hospitals, many hospitals run by Putian investors are still operating in the field of male diseases. 
 
In the 830th issue, China Newsweek, a nationally distributed weekly, ran a cover story on problems of the Putian-style private hospitals offering medical treatments for male diseases.
 
Below is an excerpt of the article.
 
Ouya Male Hospital case
 
Yang Xiaofei, 29, transferred 2,172 yuan ($328.65) to his credit card of China Guangfa Bank, the last payment for his debt on November 2. “After nearly three years, it finally comes to an end. I paid off the debt,” Yang said with bitterness and happiness.
 
During the past three years, in the daytime, Yang would keep himself busy as much as possible, which would help him forget his sad story, but at night, he would still feel the anguish. 
 
On December 17, 2014, Yang first visited Ouya Male Hospital of Jinan in Lixia district of Jinan, capital city of Shandong province, for treatment of his male disease, because the hospital’s advertisements could be seen everywhere in the city.
 
Sun Yajun, a doctor in Ouya Male Hospital at that time, received Yang and asked him to take blood test and the “glans sensitivity test”. After tests, he told Yang that he had severe premature ejaculation, impotence and prostatitis.
 
Sun suggested Yang to undergo three separate surgeries to treat with the impotence, premature ejaculation and long foreskin, and said the hospital had three sets of surgeries with different prices.
 
Yang chose a middle-priced set that he thought would cost him several thousand yuan, but in fact it was 14,830 yuan.
 
During the operation, doctors told him that his penis lace was too short and it would influence his sexual ability too, and an extra operation costing several hundred yuan would help him. Yang agreed.
 
In more than 20 minutes, three operations of penile dorsal nerve neurotomy, deep burial of penis vein and circumcision, as well as the extra one, were all finished. But the “real” medical treatment has just started.
 
Sun told Yang that in order to have a better treatment, there were auxiliary physical therapies, and the equipment was imported.
 
The fee for the use of imported equipment was 3,000 yuan per hour. “My wage was only about 4,000 yuan a month at that time,” Yang said. After the first auxiliary physical therapies and the surgeries, the cost reached 20,195.1 yuan.
 
Though doctors promised him that he would be fine within two weeks after the treatment, there was no improvement after 14 days and thereafter. However, the medical fees increased. By January 15, 2015, Yang had spent 112,697.4 yuan.
 
Yang had no deposit and he could only borrow money from friends, colleagues and classmates and even get loans from credit institutions to pay for the fees. Sleepless and helpless, Yang told his parents who are farmers that “he was swindled out of 60,000 yuan.”
 
In August 2015, Yang visited the Shandong Provincial Hospital where he queued for half day to get his consultation with a doctor who told him that there were no such surgeries in the provincial hospital.
 
After visiting another public hospital, Yang knew that his condition had little improvement. He still suffered from the premature ejaculation and prostatitis. 
 
Sun gave the reason that Yang had too much psychological pressure. He finally offered favorable prices for Yang’s future treatment.
 
After rounds of negotiations, Yang expected the hospital to refund the medical fees, and he also reported his case to the Jinan city health authorities where government workers offered him to help him by contacting the hospital mediation and through legal ways.
 
On December 31, 2015. Yang sued the hospital at the Lixia district court for refund of his medical fees of 108,007.2 yuan based on his invoices from the hospital. Even though he though the cost surpassed 160,000 yuan.
 
The district court handed a favorable verdict to Yang on September 14, 2016, but the hospital appealed the case to a higher court. The hospital canceled its registration with authorities on Nov 9, 2016. The appeal was made by the investor Chen Yiping, who was from Putian.
 
On February 20, 2017, the Jinan court upheld the first sentence. But Chen did not give the money immediately. On May 27, Yang reached an agreement under the mediation of the Jinan court under which Chen was to pay Yang 80,000 yuan. And on June 8, Yang got the money.
 
Shelled treatments
 
So, finally, Yang got some refund. The result might be admired by some other patients who received treatments on male diseases. Hundreds of such patients complained about their situations in Wechat groups.
 
On August 24 this year, Wang Nan, a college student in Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, went to the Five Continent Hospital of Guigang where doctors told him that he got severe prostatitis and excessive glans sensitivity.
 
Wang was told to undergo operation for lowering the sensitivity. Doctors said his four nerves there were swollen, and they used new drainage skill to reduce swelling, not cutting off the nerves.
 
The surgeries cost Wang 4,800 yuan. But new problems emerged. 
 
“I have no feeling in the section cut during the operation, and no pain even when stuck by a needle. I worry it has caused permanent damage,” Wang said.
 
After negotiations with the hospital, Wang finally got 4,000 yuan back on September 21.
 
However, Jiang Hui, a director of andrology at Peking University Third Hospital, said there was no such surgery for lowering the sensitivity, but it was called penile dorsal nerve neurotomy, and private hospitals had changed the name.
 
Jiang, a member of the male diseases association under the Chinese Medical Association, said that the surgery is to find some nerves in the penis, and cut several branches, which will lower the nerve conduction to reduce the sensitivity. 
 
It could possibly extend the erection time, but it can be damaging and is the last resort for treating premature ejaculation, Jiang said. Few public hospitals carry out such surgeries, and it amounts to over-diagnosis and overtreatment by private hospitals, he said.
 
Zhang Chunying, the first Chinese doctor to carry out the penis neurotomy in China in 2001, said that he doesn’t do the surgery now, but it has become a tool for Putian-style hospitals to make money.
 
There are more than 30 names of surgeries using the neurotomy theory, and many private hospitals just used different names to make gimmicks and flicker patients, Zhang said.
 
Wang Chuntao said that the nerve has the regenerative ability to repair injuries, and the neurotomy was not so effective for most patients. Private hospitals knew the truth, and they usually did false surgeries, cutting the skin and stitching it. 
 
In a QQ chat group search for protecting rights of patients receiving the surgery, many said that they had no improvement in their sexual ability after the surgery, and some believed that they might be victim to wrong surgeries.
 
In a tragic case, a college student called Liu Kun received the circumcision and the penis enlargement surgery promoted at the Jiulong Urology Hospital of Changchun. He died of organ failure caused by the complications 13 days later.
 
Blandishments
 
Wang said he received a patient from private hospitals almost every day. “Before the medical reform in Beijing, the registration fee was only 14 yuan, but many such patients even could not afford the fee.”
 
One case that impressed him was in August when a mother accompanied her son to visit Wang. The son has worked for many years in Beijing and saved some 60,000 yuan, but he has spent all the money in a private hospital.
 
Wang said after hearing his explanation on the surgery, some patients would realize the fact, while others would still like to receive treatment in private hospitals.
 
“Some patients visited the public hospital, not because they think the private hospitals are not good, but because they spent too much and could not afford the cost of the ‘high-level treatment,’” Wang said.
 
“Some patients complained of poor services in public hospitals, and in private hospitals, the medical and nursing stuff would accompany them during the whole process, and they could quickly see the doctors. In public hospitals, they have to wait about two hours in queue,” he said.
 
Wang said that in the private hospitals, the patients are encouraged to receive their treatment by highlighting the seriousness of their diseases and the services there. 
 
Private hospitals exaggerate the situations to put psychological pressure on patients, and patients then would be feel that they need to rely on the doctors to cure his diseases, and they spend money there.
 
Over-packaging and publicity are common for private hospitals. They usually boast to have famous doctors and exerts on male diseases, and some private hospitals even have falsely promoted themselves using celebrity names. 
 
Huang Weidong, vice chairman of the Private Hospital Management Branch of Chinese Hospital Association, said that the doctors employed in the private hospitals are registered, but not experts.
 
Doctors in the private hospitals always move from one place to another, and they would not offer medical services at their hometown. “Because of complaints, a doctor could not stay at one place, and move to another,” Wang said. 
 
Regulation and supervision
 
According to data from the Peking University Third Hospital, patients seeking help on male diseases increased 15.23 percent in the first half of 2016. In 2015, there were 120,000 patients, and in 2012 there were only 80,000.
 
While lots of young men want treatment for their private diseases, however, most public hospitals have no special department on male diseases, and there are only around 3,000 registered doctors in the field across the country.
 
Huang Weidong said that because of the sluggish development of andrology in China, the country has no top plan to lead the development. Less than 50 hospitals out of 1,500 major hospitals across the country have set up special departments. 
 
When the private hospitals publicized male diseases, the public hospitals still treated this field as a gray corner, Shang Xuejun, director of the andrology department at Nanjing General Hospital, said.
 
Public hospitals still set up their departments according to a list published by the Health Ministry in 1994. The list has 35 first-class departments and 130 second-class subjects, but andrology is not included.
 
Shang said that because the andrology was not an independent subject in major hospitals, doctors have to take urology courses to get professional titles. At his hospital, andrology doctors work under the reproductive medicine center.
 
Shang admitted that because only a few public hospitals have special departments to receive patients with male diseases, private hospitals are filling the gap. 
 
Flattering advertisements from private hospitals have just bewildered this fragile group. Patients seemingly receive VIP services in the private hospitals, but they actually have suffered serious physical and mental injuries.
 
Jiang Hui said that investors only wanted to make money from running private hospitals, and because of a lack of supervision, they usually maximize their profits by offering and pricing their services independently.

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