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Tamil Nadu - Chennai Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Registration of clinics, labs mandatory

Ramya Kannan

Data on floor plan, fire safety norms a must


Application forms available with Health department of Corporation

“It is welcome to enumerate the number of practitioners''


CHENNAI: Chennai Corporation, in its recent budget, mandated that all private clinics and laboratories, including scan centres, be registered with the civic body.

While all hospitals and nursing homes have already been issued orders to register themselves, the attention has now turned on to operations on a smaller scale — individual clinics — and all laboratories. The number of such individual clinics and labs, however, are quite substantial in Chennai, touted in some quarters to be the Mecca of Medicine.

According to official sources, already major hospitals in the city, including the government hospitals have registered themselves with the civic body. About 250 hospitals are already on the rolls. This is in keeping with the provisions of the Madras City Municipal Corporation Act of 1919, sources informed.

Application forms are available with the Health department of the Chennai Corporation. Health department officials said applications must contain details about floor plan, and fire safety norms.

The way the civic body approaches the issue will help to remove quackery, and facilitate standardised bio-medical waste management programmes. Also, the civic body authorities are of the belief that it would be able to demand of the private hospitals and clinics a periodic report on infectious diseases. While it is mandatory to provide this information, there are a number of defaulters. Unless this information is available on a pan-city basis, infection control will be difficult, officials said.

Will this move facilitate the civic body to become a bridge between the public and hospitals to render quality service? It is possible, according to officials. In effect, at some point of time, if the residents of Chennai have problems with the quality a particular clinic is providing, they can make a complaint to the civic body.

Indian Medical Association's College of General Practitioners National Secretary T. N. Ravishankar said it was welcome to enumerate the number of practitioners in the city, “as long as extra charges are not made on hospitals, private practice, as that would transfer costs onto patient.” As far as reporting notifiable diseases goes, he said that it was very important and any tool to make it universal would go a long way in containing infectious diseases.

R.Immanuel, founder, Bharat Scans, said all six units had already started the process of registration with the civic body. While the labs (those that have the ultra sound scan facility) are currently only registered with the Directorate of Medical Services, as part of the requirements of the Pre Conception and Pre Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act, the civic body's proposal would bring them under a singe registering authority.

“Standardisation is the need of the hour. It will help push quality too,” he said, equivocal in his commendation for the civic body. However, he expressed the hope that the registration process would not suffer any undue delays.

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