Danwei: Migrant worker who was stabbed by thugs while apprehending thief now caught in limbo

Danwei, in a translation from the Shenzhen Evening News, has an amazing story about a migrant worker whose life has been turned upside-down simply because he’s trying to do the right thing. Danwei writes that.

Li Zhanfeng (李展锋), a security guard,…was hospitalized after being stabbed while trying to stop a robbery. His company had not registered him for work-related injury insurance, so he was treated at the hospital under the name of another employee who did have insurance. He reclaimed his name but now owes more than 30,000 RMB in outstanding medical bills that his former employer refuses to pay.

The report notes that Li’s employer − Bi An Networking – only bought work-related injury insurance for some of its employees, and not others. If an employee were to get injured, the company would simply use the account of another employee and lie about the injured employee’s real identity− which is exactly what the company tried to do in Li’s case.

After Li woke up from surgery in the hospital, he found that his name had been changed on the charts. However, Li was unwilling to go along with this scam. The report notes that this is far from uncommon in Shenzhen. One doctor told the reporter:

Work-related injuries are not like ordinary medical insurance, which is matched against an insurance card and a personal ID. We doctors have no way to verify the patient's identity. Whatever the patient or the patient's company says, goes. So it's fairly common for work-related injury patients to change names back and forth.

For Li, choosing honesty has had serious repercussions. He hasn’t been able to afford proper rehab, and the hospital won’t let him leave until he pays his outstanding medical bills totaling more than 30,000 yuan. Most absurdly, Li can’t file the necessary paperwork because he’s confined to the hospital:

Li said that he can't leave the hospital to get a disability assessment, and without a disability assessment, he cannot file for labor arbitration, so he has no way to seek work-related injury compensation.

This isn’t the only high-profile house arrest/kidnapping case by a hospital in the media either. Danwei also reports that a hospital in Dongguan has kept an infant until the parents can pay the nearly 40,000 yuan in medical fees that they owe.

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