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Karnataka tightens noose, asks private hospitals to provide itemized bills

Following complaints by patients that private hospitals are charging consolidated rates for treatment, the State Health Department has directed all private medical establishments to furnish itemized bills for services rendered under the KPME Amendment Act mandatorily.

In a recent circular, State Health Commissioner Randeep D. asked all the District Health and Family Welfare Officers (DHFWOs) to direct all private medical establishments to mandatorily furnish itemised bills for the services provided to patients, irrespective of whether the procedure or treatment or service were covered under any health insurance scheme or not.

Not consolidated rates
“It has come to the notice of this Commissionerate of Health, that some private medical establishments have fixed consolidated rates for some medical treatments and services and only such consolidated rates are being mentioned in the bill provided to the patient without an itemised bill,” the circular stated.

“If any private medical establishment does not comply with the provision for issuing itemised bills, the DHFWOs have been authorised to initiate appropriate action as per section 19(5) of the KPME Amendment Act, 2017 against the erring establishments,” the circular stated.

What Act says
Section 10(1) of the KPME Act stipulates that every private medical establishment must display the ‘schedule of charges payable’ for consultation, investigations, medical treatments, procedures, hospital charges and other services on a public website or on its own website, if any, and on the notice board of the establishment at a conspicuous place at the reception. And, they should also provide a schedule of charges in the form of booklets or brochures, which are readily available to patients and public at the establishment at all times.

“Besides, as per section 10(2) of the Act, for the services provided to a patient, the private medical establishments should collect from the patient or his relative or attendant an amount not more than the charges notified, after providing an itemised bill,” the circular stated. The Hindu

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