Private medical practitioners are now at loggerheads with the Karnataka government with the proposed KPME Act. State health minister Ramesh Kumar has not bothered to pay attention to the demands made by protesting Doctors. He meekly threatened to quit the government which appears more like a planned political drama between him and the CM Siddaramaiah.
Karnataka has been reeling under Congress’s five years of misrule in the state, a fact underlined by the doling out of freebies at the last moment and announcement of several low-cost services in absence of anything worthwhile to show for their work. The roads are broken, civic problems in Cities of Karnataka are at an all-time high, traffic woes have worsened, and electricity supply has remained largely erratic in the so called “IT and start up hub” of India.
The attack on the famed “top of the line” private medical services in Karnataka which draws patients from not only from neighbouring states but also from foreign countries is unfortunate. The private medical services cater to about 60-70% of the needs of the state and attract top of the line medical professionals from all over the country. The famed service provided to the public at private hospitals includes a plethora of super specialty services of which none are subsidised by the Congress government. The public woes are sure to increase, once the rates get a blanket ceiling. Patients requiring Difficult and complicated treatment will have nowhere to go. The ultimate loss is to the public who will now be forced to either go to other states or abroad for specialist care. If you pay peanuts, all you will get is monkeys. All the Good Doctors will be forced to leave the state and settle elsewhere.
The proposed act by the Congress Government in Karnataka states:
1.) A district redressal committee which includes Zila Panchayat can decide fate of doctors. A Doctor can be jailed at the whim of a government representative without a trial and the Doctor won’t have any legal rights and will be left to fend for him/her self or pay huge fines. Basically, it concludes into a hafta raj-political nexus, a vestige of Congress style of working. When there is already a consumer court, criminal court and Medical Council available for complaint against doctors, One is forced to wonder about the need for establishing another inspection platform. While patients and doctors can hope for justice in front of a judge, but to expect that from political appointees is simply an exercise in futility.
2.) The proposed bill has a jail term for patient death. This is one of the most stupid moves because it proves that either the honourable “health” minister believes in immortality or he just wants to enjoy the sadistic pleasure of putting doctors in jail. No doctor wants to see their patients dead, but Death is an inevitability one has to deal with. Doctors are mere mortals too, they aren’t gods with divine elixir in their hands. After this rule is enforced, Doctors will refuse to see critically sick patients.
3.) The government also wishes to fix rates for procedures in private hospitals: This is another attack on Doctors. The government believes that Doctors should earn money only for morning to evening survival and have no rights to comfort in accordance to their professional expertise while CM Siddaramaiah flaunts his 70 lakh “Hublot” watch to the public. This is selective targeting, hitting the only soft target in their range: Doctors that is. If we assume equality as the cornerstone of Congress’s Policies, then five stars in Bangalore must serve food at the same rate as Indira Canteen? Fair enough, no?
The Karnataka Congress government has yet again shown its lack of dedication for public by suggesting this act. An act that will surely mark their end in the state. The government instead of focusing on improving the existing customer redressal forums has decided to make a “Kangaroo court” and in the course of it, made a mockery of the entire system and Doctors.
The Congress has for long followed the process of institutionalized oppression and appears committed to bring it to every profession they set their eyes on, the latest is Doctors; next could be you. Or your profession!