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Delhi Government Proposes 50% Profit Cap On Medicines

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Delhi govt. proposes 50% profit cap on medicines Once notified, private hospitals that flout advisory may face punitive measures Private hospitals in the Capital should be allowed only up to a 50% profit margin over the procurement price of medicines and other consumables, the Delhi government proposed on Monday. Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain announced that the government would be putting a draft advisory in the public domain for 30 days, seeking comments and objections.
  • After that, Mr. Jain said the government would notify the advisory and amend the Delhi Nursing Homes Act in order to introduce punitive measures, including cancellation of licence, for those who don’t follow the advisory. Addressing a press conference, Mr. Jain said the government had formed a nine-member committee to look into “complaints of over charging” and other issues at private hospitals in December 2017.
  • In its report, the committee had recommended various measures, which had been compiled into an advisory. The draft advisory says hospitals and nursing homes would have to cap their mark-ups on medicines and consumables that are not in the National List of Essential Medicines at 50% of the procurement prices or charge the maximum retail price, whichever is lowest. For implants, the cap proposed was 35% of the procurement price.
  • ‘Dignity of the dead’ The government also proposed a 50% waiver on the total bill if a patient dies within six hours of being admitted to a hospital’s emergency or casualty wards. Similarly, if a patient dies within 24 hours of admission, then 20% of the bill should be proposed, the draft. The advisory also says that hospitals would not be allowed to refuse releasing a deceased patient’s body if the bill has not been paid. Mr. Jain said this was to ensure the “dignity of the dead”. The government proposed increased transparency for the packages sold by hospitals. In case a patient requires additional procedures after being admitted for one surgery, the second surgery should have a 50% discount, the draft proposed.

Article By Aashish Choudhary

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