A great scholar had once said; “Behind every fortune, there is a crime associated with it” and these words seem appropriate when we talk about the private hospitals. The recent study of National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NAPA) has revealed the excessive profiteering of the hospitals of Delhi and NCR. These hospitals which promise to take proper care of the patients are just busy in taking care of their profit margins which soar up to whopping 1737% on drugs, consumables and diagnostics. Their benevolence towards profit margin cost the people a fairly 46% of the patient’s bill on these three items. The analysis has noted that “The major beneficiaries of profits in all these cases because of inflated MRPs have been hospitals rather than drugs and devices’ manufacturers”.
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The worst sufferer of them is the consumables which have been ranging from 350% to 1700% followed by the drugs, not under price control which account for 160% to 1200%. Even the drugs which are under price control witness an increase of 115% to 360%.
The hospitals do not offer a choice for the patients to buy the same product from outside which easily makes them vulnerable to such a high expenditure on their medical bill. They are a crystal-clear epitome of market distortion as they effectively prompt the manufacturers to print higher MRPs. At the time when such Artificial Inflation has become a common phenomenon, The Policy Times suggest some policy which could benefit the common masses:-
- A strict code of conduct for private hospitals
- Answerability to the concerned government
- Severe penalty in case of such fraudulent activities
- Raising the bar of govt. hospitals (This will reduce the need of private hospitals)
- De-licensing the faulty hospitals with immediate effect
If these measures could be done then only the general public could dream of affordable health care.