Now, Get those Pearly Whites on EMI
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19 June 2010
When 22–year–old physiotherapist Pratik Shah, who had struggled with a dental problem since childhood, first heard of the cost of his dental treatment, he thought he could never afford it.
Then his dental surgeon offered him the option of paying the fee–a whopping Rs3 lakh – through equated monthly instalments (EMI).
A number of doctors, dentists, and eye surgeons are offering the option of EMI payment to their patients, who otherwise would not be able to afford the high cost of the treatments.
“The gap between my front teeth was embarrassing. I was ridiculed in college and wanted to get it fixed. But the treatment was very expensive,” said Shah.
“If not for the option of EMI, I would never have been able to afford this surgery,” said the Kandivli resident, who made a down payment of 20% of the total fee and now pays Rs3,000 per month.
Bhagyashri Bandekar, 23, a Mahim resident, who works for a pharmaceutical company, underwent lasik surgery a couple of months ago and is now paying an EMI of Rs1,500 to her surgeon.
“I had a power of +2 since I was 12 years old and had to wear really thick glasses. I had considered the option of lasik surgery but at Rs40,000, it was too expensive for me,” said Bandekar.
“Such procedures, though expensive, are not covered by insurance, as they are cosmetic treatments. I found paying through EMI a very feasible option,” said Bandekar, who made a down payment of 22% of the total cost.
“Payment through EMI works out well for the patients as it does not burden their pocket excessively,” said Prakash Seth, general manager, LaserX, which started this option five months ago. “We are now tying up with banks as well.”
Seth said they have over 800 patients paying for various procedures, including lasik, varicose veins, proctology treatments etc, through EMI.
“More than 20 of my patients from our centres in Bandra, Peddar Road, Lokhandwala, have availed of this option so far,” said aesthetic dentist Dr Shantanu Jaradi, Dentzz Dental Care. “Since most of our treatments cost over Rs1 lakh, we had requests from patients for some finance options. We also help them with bank document procedures.”