Friday, February 10, 2012

Govt.order bound to have nationwide implications

Govt.order sets at rest all issues on free treatment for poor  by pvt hospitals Says lawyer Ashok Agarwal 
The  Central  Government on 09.02.2012 has filed its Order dated 02.02.2012 in  the Hon’ble Delhi High Court informing the Hon’ble Court that after the Hon’ble Supreme Court has affirmed on 01.09.2011 the directions passed by the Hon’ble Delhi High Court on 22.03.2007 in Social Jurist vs GNCT of Delhi, the Government of India has taken a policy decision on the basis of judgment passed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court that all the six hospitals which have been provided land by Land & Development Officer must strictly follow the policy of providing treatment free of cost to 25% OPD and 10% IPD patients. It has also informed that the Government of India has further incorporated the aforesaid conditions mentioned in the Para 3(i) to (xviii) above as a part of the terms and conditions of lease/allotment.
“Though the Govt Order relates to six hospitals of Delhi, namely, (1) Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, (2) Mool Chand Khairati Hospital, (3) St. Stephen’s Hospital, (4) Veeranwali International Hospital/ PRIMUS ORTHO, (5) R.B.Seth Jassa Ram Hospital and (6) Vimhans, but it will certainly have nationwide implications as the same lays down a national policy in principle for all private hospitals all over the country to whom public lands have been allotted on concessional rates,” says Lawyer and Social Activist Ashok Agarwal who has been fighting for the rights of the poor for the last more than 4 decades.
Social Jurist, A Civil Rights Group way back in 2002 through Advocate Ashok Agarwal had filed a PIL in Delhi High Court highlighting the fact that the private hospitals on public land allotted to them on concessional rates have not been complying with the allotment conditions regarding providing free medical treatment to the poor to the extent of 25% IPD and 40% OPD and the Government has failed to take any action against these erring hospitals.  Delhi High Court following the recommendations of Justice Qureshi Committee which were accepted by the Government , directed by judgment dated 22.03.2007 all the private hospitals on public land allotted to them on concessional rates to provide totally free of cost treatment to economically weaker section (EWS) patients to the extent of 10% IPD and 25% OPD.  At present, as many as 43 private hospitals have been identified which are covered by the judgment of the Hon’ble High Court which has in total nearly 800 free-beds for the poor.  These 43 hospitals do not include Apollo Hospital which alone has 200 free beds for the poor. (10.02.2012)

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