NEW DELHI, 14 December 2017: The Indian healthcare industry is concerned and worried with the recent onslaught of negativity generated following a few unfortunate cases. While we fully support the legal and medico-legal actions that need to be taken against those found guilty by the Medical Council or by legal authorities, our request to the government and public is to give cognisance to the good work carried out by the private healthcare industry that is now being vilified.
India is unique in having almost 80% of quality healthcare in the country being provided by the private healthcare sector. 69.5% households in urban areas and 62.5% households in rural areas of India, prefer private healthcare over pubic healthcare. Many of these private, state of the art healthcare establishments with highly trained doctors and healthcare professionals offer technologically advanced care with best possible medical outcomes at a fraction of the cost, when compared to our neighbours like Thailand and Singapore. This is authenticated by the increasing inflow of foreign patients into the country.
India is already grappling with extremely low bed density at 1.3 beds per 1000 population, as compared to WHO recommendation of 3.5 beds. Hence, it is not in the interest of public and nation if hospitals are randomly shut down due to individual errors. It will only widen the gap further and directly affect the health and well-being of patients undergoing treatment in hospitals. We request the media and the government not to pre-judge in any case. Rational and appropriate action is necessary in case of negligence or failure of the healthcare system based on proper investigation, validation based on the principles of natural justice and not based on emotional outburst.
What is needed today, is to bridge the widening trust deficit between the private healthcare providers and the government, the doctor and the patient. In an effort to bridge this gap, FICCI has been advocating for the past one decade to the government to implement standardization of practices to bring in transparency and facilitate interoperability of data. Under the current scenario, expeditious implementation of Standard Treatment Guidelines, Electronic Health Records and Clinical Establishments Act across the country is imperative. The affordability aspect needs to be covered with increasing penetration of health insurance through social and private health insurance schemes.
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