The Indian Medical Association has urged the Union and State governments to relax norms and licence fees for the establishment of hospitals in rural areas, stating that many patients are being forced to travel long distances in the absence of medical facilities in their vicinity.
Ahead of National Doctors’ Day, IMA Central Working Committee member J.C. Naidu said that many doctors were reluctant to establish small hospitals in rural areas due to the steep costs and stringent norms involved.
Someone wanting to set up even a small hospital needs to take the permission of civic authorities, fire department, and labour department among others. The fees are almost the same for small as well as big hospitals. In the backdrop of high rents, electricity tariff and salaries of medical staff, nobody is coming forward to set up hospitals in small towns and mandal headquarters. Apart from giving financial incentives, the government can relax norms for small hospitals established with 20 beds,” said Dr Naidu.
He also urged the government to remove medical services from the ambit of the Consumer Protection Act, 2019. “Every doctor strives hard to save the lives of patients. But patients may still die in spite of all efforts. That is why the IMA is requesting to exclude doctors from the Consumer Protection Act,” he added. The Hindu