Nagpur: Hailing the Bill introduced by State Government to curb ‘cut practice’ of doctors, the Akhil Bharatiya Grahak Panchayat, Vidarbha region, has demanded installation of rate boards in front of every hospital.
Talking to media persons, the Vidarbha Region President of Akhil Bharatiya Grahak Panchayat Gajanan Pande said that doctors have god-like status in the society. But some doctors see their profession as business rather than service to society. Many a time, individual doctors and hospitals refer the patients to ‘unnecessary’ check-ups, diagnostic tests or surgeries for the sake of commission, even for foreign trips, costly gifts. Some doctors were even found referring the patients to specific labs for various tests, CT scan, Whole Body scan and other tests. This practice is spreading among doctors in vast magnitude. This is condemnable. Grahak Panchayat as well as honest doctors have raised their voice against this unscrupulous practice frequently, media reports quoted Pande as saying.
“90 percent hospitals have set up their own laboratories and medicine shops and the patients are ‘forced’ to purchase drugs from same shops and that of particular companies. It is mandatory of sorts for patients,” Pande disclosed.
Notably, a ‘cut’ is a commission offered to a doctor by a counterpart when a patient is referred for check-ups, diagnostic tests or surgeries. Under the proposed Prevention of Cut Practices in Healthcare Services Act, 2017, a senior police officer will be the complaint authority. A complainant has to give a written affidavit about his complaint to the police officer, who will conduct a discreet verification of the allegation for three months. This will be followed by an FIR, and the penalty decided by the judge could be simple imprisonment up to three years or fine or both.
According to media reports, the Vidarbha Region President of Akhil Bharatiya Grahak Panchayat Gajanan Pande has demanded passing of the stringent Prevention of Cut Practices in Healthcare Services Act, 2017 in the Budget Session of Maharashtra Legislature in March 2018 and stop loot of patients by some doctors.
A draft of the proposed Prevention of Cut Practices in Healthcare Services Act, 2017 was in the public domain for suggestions and objections. The draft Act covers individual doctors and healthcare setups, hitherto not covered under the Medical Council of India. Also, the Act brings allopathy, ayurveda and homeopathy practitioners under one ambit.