Friday, Sep 12, 2003
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By Our Staff Reporter
Speaking to newsmen on Wednesday night at the IMA hall here, Dr. Ranga Reddy said a committee has already been constituted in each district to work out the modalities in fixation of charges for various hospital services. He admitted that there were disparities in the charges in the same towns or cities, which drew flak from the people.
He said the committee comprising members of the IMA and the Andhra Pradesh Nursing Homes Association would hold a series of meetings to categorise the hospitals and nursing homes as per the facilities available there. Once the hospitals and nursing homes' list is prepared category-wise, fixation of rates would become a reality, he said, adding that only in cases of certain emergency services the hospital authorities or the doctors would be allowed to charge more. He said establishing a nursing home or a hospital involved huge investment and sometimes the doctors are forced to borrow money from commercial banks. He said in such cases, the charges levied could be on the higher side but all efforts are made not to tax the patients.
Dr. Ranga Reddy said the focus of the IMA would now be on provision of emergency medical services in hospitals. He said this was one area, which was very important and critical. He said even cities like Hyderabad were not equipped to handle emergency medical services. He said a study revealed that there are only 11 ambulances, which have the emergency medical services facilities. In other cities of the State, the situation is not upto the mark.
He said the doctors and para-medical staff are being trained to handle emergency cases. He said efforts are being made to establish Intensive Care Units and Acute Medical Care Unit in private hospitals and nursing homes. Dr. Ranga Reddy came down heavily against the corporate hospitals, which were found guilty of issuing unethical advertisements in the print and electronic media.
He said it was wrong to pay commission to middlemen for bringing patients to a hospital. He said the IMA was writing to the corporate hospitals to desist from issuing unethical advertisements.
The IMA State branch chief said that a drive would be launched against quacks to expose their methods. He said many of the critical cases brought to the private hospitals come from quacks, who with their little knowledge play with the lives of the patients. He said the quacks usually promise the patients quick relief but delay the treatment and when the condition turns critical advise the dependents of the patients to shift them to a private hospital. He said the IMA would go all out to expose such quacks.
He said the IMA had introduced `Appa Rao family security scheme' wherein the dependents of an IMA member are eligible to receive Rs. 15 lakhs insurance cover, on death. A sum of Rs. 350 is collected from the 14,000 IMA members across the country. He said the IMA is also running urban health centres in a couple of places in the State. The IMA district president, Narayana Rao, secretary, Sridhar, IMA State vice-president, Ravinder Reddy, IMA State committee member, Madhusekhar, and former IMA president, Ramgopal Reddy, were present.
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