NEW DELHI: In a major move aimed at checking unnecessary medical tests and procedures, the health ministry on Sunday said it was working on a plan to make it mandatory for all private hospitals to declare and display the treatment costs of different diseases.
Jagdish Prasad, director general of health services (DGHS), told TOI that the ministry’s plan would check overbilling and bring in transparency in the healthcare sector.
“Our aim is to notify standard costs for various medical procedures such as angioplasty, coronary bypass surgery etc. We also plan to categorize hospitals based on quality of services offered and develop standard treatment costs for each category,” DGHS Prasad said.
He said suggestions are being sought from all stakeholders, including the corporate-run hospitals, on how the new system can be rolled out.
“We will initially ask each hospital to give their treatment charges, which would help us slot these hospitals into categories,” Prasad said.
The DGHS also said patient treatment cannot be taken as a clinical trial. “Stem cell therapy is being offered for spine injuries by many hospitals and patients are charged for that. This despite the fact that there’s no proven effect of the therapy. This can only be stopped through patient awareness and strict monitoring by government agencies,” Prasad said. [Source]