With reference to a report in Times of India (TOI) dated 8th September 2017 which was headlined as  "No  operations  in  nursing  homes without  ICU".    The  report  goes  on  to  state  that  in  the  Bijoy Kumar Sinha versus Dr Bishwanath Das case Justices A K Goel and U U Lalit have held that nursing homes without an intensive care unit facility cannot carry out surgeries as absence of an ICU posed danger to the patient's life. Association of Medical Consultants Mumbai and their legal team have perused the entire judgment in question and found that nowhere in the judgment or during the course of the arguments in court have  the  learned  judges  commented  in  the  manner  reported.    The judgment pertained to a case pending for 23 years and the judges while exonerating Dr. Das for negligence in deciding to operate on the wife of the petitioner had awarded a sum of 5 Lakh  rupees  without  interest  to  the  petitioner  for  possibly  ignoring  the  high  risk  factors  like hypertension and low hemoglobin in the patient while choosing to operate in his nursing home. It is unfortunate that TOI chose to ignore the facts of the cases and rather gave it a headline which  gives  a  complete  different  impression  to  the  readers  of  the  newspaper  and  has  created  a sense of panic amongst the public as well as the medical community. It is pertinent to note that almost 50-60 percent  of the healthcare services in our country are delivered by Nursing homes most of which are without ICUs and any move to stop surgeries in these nursing homes will have an adverse impact on healthcare delivery system of our country. Many government hospitals too lack ICUs and they too would be unable to perform surgeries as per your headline. We once again reiterate that the Judgment does not in any way mandate/suggest that all surgeries hence forth must be carried out in Nursing homes with ICUs.   As  a  body  of  Consultants  that  represents  over  9500  consultants  operating  in  both  nursing  home owners and consultants in corporate hospitals we would like to categorically state 

1) There are international norms of risk grading for surgery and it is well accepted that Grade 1 and 2 and select cases of Grade 3 can be operated in small nursing homes.  

2)  It is a fact that worldwide there is a focus on opening Day Care Centers for surgery and that is an acceptable modality to reduce cost of surgery to the patients

3) Any move to restrict surgeries to only hospitals/nursing homes with ICUs is in direct contradiction to this concept. 

4) If implemented without reasonable thought and all surgeries necessarily move to tertiary centers the cost for a simple operation would go up to 3 times. The strain on patient’s pockets and the strain on the tertiary health care facilities will make access to quality healthcare difficult for the common man. 

We  therefore  call  upon  you  to  retract  your  story  and  carry  an  appropriate  equally  prominent clarification to dispel the misinformation which your earlier report carried. We would like to have an appointment with you to discuss the issues in detail so that the appropriate clarifications can be  issued.  We  are  confident  that  you  will  understand  the  gravity  of  the  situation  and  take appropriate measures to rectify the report. – Medical Buyer Bureau


Why is The Government So Bad at Health Care?

 

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