Though popularity of private hospitals make them preferred destinations for patients across Kashmir but still all is not going well with the functioning of health services at private hospitals. While satisfaction of patients undergoing surgeries at private hospitals does not mean that all goes well at the private hospitals in Kashmir, Unfortunately the Outpatient Departments (OPDs) are not as regularly and promptly functioning at private hospitals as they are functioning at Government Hospitals. It is not just an allegation but a reality that doctors are found available mostly in the afternoon almost at all the private hospitals as most of them are working in Government hospitals and as such there remains very little scope for the functioning of Outpatient Departments (OPDs) at the private hospitals. What merits a mention here is that outpatient services are as important as are the inpatient services. Even delivery inpatient services are not as prompt as they should have been keeping in the view the high charges patients pay at private hospitals as surgeries in private hospitals are also conducted mostly in the afternoon. So timing for surgeries shows huge compromise on the priority in the delivery of inpatient services at private hospital. Unfortunately the procedures set f appointment of doctors at Government hospitals are hugely compromised at private hospitals. Since the availability of doctors at private hospitals has a direct bearing on delivery of key health services at these hospitals it is for the Health & Medical Education Department to frame rules for regular appointment of doctors and paramedics and ensure their strict implementation at private hospitals.
“While services of doctors and paramedics are used to diagnose, manage and treat ailments promptly, compromises over the appointments of doctors and paramedics even at the private hospitals is tantamount to compromise the delivery of both critical and normal health services”.
While the irrefutable fact is that one single compromise in the working of the private hospitals could become the cause of many more failures in the development of private health sector in Jammu & Kashmir, the issue demands immediate attention and intervention of the Government for the purposes of the development of private health sector in Jammu & Kashmir like several states and union territories of the country. Deaths of patients due to criticality in surgeries because of the negligence of doctors are not only reported from Government Hospitals but during last two years such deaths have been reported from even famed private hospitals of Srinagar city as well. So a medical audit if conducted annually by eminent doctors of repute could be also a right way to make Private Hospitals accountable. While services of doctors and paramedics are used to diagnose, manage and treat ailments promptly, compromises over the appointments of doctors and paramedics even at the private hospitals is tantamount to compromise the delivery of both critical and normal health services.
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