Bhutan Airlines is providing 60 free seats for those patients requiring referral outside Bhutan in commemoration of the 60th Birth Anniversary of His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo, Jigme Singye Wangchuk.
Bhutan Airlines CEO Phala Dorji announced this program at an event to mark the private airline’s second anniversary of international services on 10th October. “He said that the government is incurring heavy expenditure for referring patients to India and the airline felt such support should outweigh any other issues”-Kuensel excerpt. Indeed a greater help to many fortunate.
I contacted through Bhutan airlines Toll-free and directed to a Lady who was much more comfortable talking partially English and Dzongkha as much as I am. She was kind enough to take all my queries and clear doubts.
These are what she has for an information, their program of 60 free air tickets for Paro-Calcutta-Paro sector applies only to a patients but not to an escorts. One important document that they would be asking is an authentic Referral Letter from Jigme Dorji Wangchuk National Referral Hospital and natural air fitness letter.
Sixty free seats comes with a loss of Nu. 677520 as of today’s base fare Nu. 11292 per person for the company. Off course an assembled sum is huge though the impact would be minimal to a multinational company as those referred would differs in their referral timing and not fly on same time. Free tickets only to patients means another paid ticket if you are availing the services. In this case the cost for their genuine program of free ticket comes to Nu.5646 per person. One part Bhutan airlines sacrifices Nu. 677520 for free tickets and other Bhutan airlines adds up Nu.677520 to their income from the escorts paid tickets. So does this mean a business mind flowered?
The intent of my writing is not to disregard their noble arrangements, we have our appreciation and gratitude to Bhutan airlines services of this calibre.
However, it’s of my own opinion as I am also one of many who has a plan and planning for the referral outside Bhutan.
Well, first thing the doctors and hospital make sure the fitness of the patients are looked up and their referral assigned. Those patients whose ailment are not so serious or who can bear the discomfort & can take ground route are not eligible for air transfer. While patients who would not fare well tussling ground route are given free flight provided their air fitness granted.
Referred patients are mostly their second or third which means they are calculative with their financial planning, their improved health stability do not qualify for flight. So grounded with land transport. Their visit to hospital outside Bhutan does not end with this rather awaits another for better on review treatment. So with only free tickets to patients, I have a feeling that certain section of general public financially unsound or lagging behind would not take up this services undermining the generosity the company has highlighted.
It should be final and binding that Bhutan Airlines is giving away only free seats to patients. So it is sensible to take ground route if the patients would errands through buses, trains or Auto Rickshaws than availing this services. The cost of transport will be less for the patients who are going to Christian Medical College Hospital, Vellore India.
I am one repeating escort, I did my mathematics and choosing to tussle and bargain the land transportation. My apology if there is any sentiments directly or indirectly beached with this writing. And my appreciation to Bhutan airlines and hopeful this program would cover up indefinite stuck individuals and part some sense of care, gratitude and support built health.