Wheelchairs, which play an important role in facilitating the lives of elderly, disabled or temporarily disabled citizens, have many different models and a wide price range with the effect of technological developments.
As the dollar’s appreciation against the TL continues, the prices of dollar-linked medical materials also rise rapidly. On the other hand, due to Turkey’s foreign dependence on wheelchairs as in many products, the increased logistical cost of products from abroad directly affects prices.
While it is becoming more and more difficult for citizens to reach these products on a daily basis, healthcare professionals say they receive complaints from citizens that the products are too expensive.
CHEAPEST CHAIR Half the minimum wage
According to Fatih Akın, a medical trader in Şişli, Istanbul; Currently, the cheapest chair sells for 2,000 TL in Istanbul, while the most expensive models can go up to 100,000 TL. The prices of chairs, preferred by citizens with average income, vary in the range of 2 thousand 500-3 thousand lire.
In line with what Fatih Akın reported, Erdi Arslan, a medical trader in Istanbul Fatih, also stated that an average chair that would work is 2,500 to 3,000 lire, while the average price of a battery-powered car varies between 6,000 and 15,000. , but this amount increases as the characteristics expressed increase.
THE PRICE INCREASE IN 2 YEARS HAS EXCEEDED 500 PERCENTAGE
Stating that wheelchair prices are determined in dollars, medicine shop owner Fatih Akın said the price of a manual wheelchair, which before Covid-19 was 400TL, has now risen to 2500TL. , while another doctor, Erdi Arslan, mentioned the price difference that took place over a year. .
Arslan said that the increase in the dollar exchange rate and logistics costs directly affected the prices due to the fact that the products were imported:
“There has been a 100 percent price increase within a year. A chair that last year was 900 lire is currently sold for 1800 lire. What is the chair we are talking about, the simplest and cheapest chair “.
‘SSI’ WITHOUT HIS EXISTENCE
As the dollar rate rises, price changes continue to be a burden on citizens’ shoulders, and citizens feel neither the benefit of SGK membership nor the existence of SGK.
While SGK covers the average amount between 550-650 TL for a manual chair, it covers an amount between 2 thousand and 2 thousand 500 TL for an average battery car whose price is 15 thousand TL.
In this case, in Turkey, where inflation is announced at 73.50 percent, there is at least a 100 percent increase in wheelchairs due to the exchange rate, while SGK covers an average of 15 percent. for manual and battery powered chairs.
DOCTORS DON’T WANT TO SELL THROUGH SSI
While citizens have the right to benefit from SSI to reach wheelchairs with written reports from hospitals, many healthcare professionals do not want to sell through SGK.
Pointing out that written reports from hospitals are often inaccurate or incomplete, medical trader Fatih Akın said that healthcare professionals receive payments from SGK for patients benefiting from SSI, but SGK consistently underpays healthcare professionals, citing shortcomings in written reports. from hospitals.
Since healthcare professionals, who have suffered economic losses from SSI and hospitals, prefer to sell for cash, citizens make their purchases in cash with their own means.