Meenakshi Lekhi: Medical sector also needs a regulator

Raising the issue in Lok Sabha during Zero Hour, BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi said the private healthcare sector has been unregulated.

Written by Liz Mathew | New Delhi | Published: December 30, 2017 3:03:49 am
Meenakshi Lekhi attacks Rahul Gandhi on his Hindu Bhakt claim BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi (Express photo by Purushottam Sharma/Files)

With the Delhi government cancelling licence of a private hospital in the national capital, accusing it of criminal negligence, BJP MP from New Delhi constituency Meenakshi Lekhi on Friday demanded that a regulator be set up to streamline functioning of private healthcare facilities, as also curb overpricing of medical procedures and services.

Raising the issue in Lok Sabha during Zero Hour, Lekhi said the private healthcare sector has been unregulated.

She said, “…While on the one side, doctors at government hospitals are overworked, underpaid and under a lot of pressure, doctors in the private sector — not all of them but a whole lot of them — practice (their) profession as business; because of that, a lot of financial irregularities are happening in hospitals across the country. This needs to be corrected.”

Citing examples of alleged malpractices, she said although the government has reduced price of stents, hospitals have increased rates for the procedure to insert them to compensate for their losses. Lekhi said there is a need to set up an agency to regulate medical practices and fix rates for various procedures. “The telecom sector has TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India). The medical sector also needs a regulator,” she said.

Congress MP Mullappally Ramachandran expressed concern over the “alarming rate at which atmospheric pollution is increasing in the capital city of Delhi”and sought action. “I urge upon the Union Government, and through you the Delhi Administration, to take stringent steps to ban fireworks, to prohibit burning of stubbles, as also to prevent vehicular pollution,” he said.

BJP MP Nishikant Dubey raised the issue of non-performing assets of public sector banks and urged the government to ensure that the cost of capital of banks do not go up. He said the UPA government had signed an international regulatory framework on bank capital adequacy, and when its latest version comes into force on April 1, 2018, the cost of capital in India may go up.

“We should come out of Basel-III and international financing system or defer its implementation,” Dubey said.

Congress member from Assam Gaurav Gogoi raised the issue of recent eviction from Amchang Wildlife Sanctuary, Assam, “in the peak of winter”, which was “insensitive and inhuman”. Pointing out that they were “marginalised communities who are displaced are victims of flood, land loss and erosion”.

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