Why regulating private hospitals in Kashmir is necessary

The sealing of OT at a private hospital due to medical negligence in Kashmir exposes the loopholes in the registration process and unchecked credentials of doctors in Kashmir private hospitals.
Why regulating private hospitals in Kashmir is necessary
Representational Pic

Srinagar, Sep 15: Ruksana (name changed), 35, is worried as she is expected to deliver her baby next month.

She is undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Srinagar.

However, she is in a dilemma whether to deliver her baby at a private hospital or not after cases of medical negligence surfaced on social media.

Like Rukhsana, many other expecting mothers are apprehensive about going to private hospitals for the delivery.

Recently, a medical negligence case at a private hospital forced authorities to seal the Operation Theatre (OT).

The sealing of OT at a private hospital due to medical negligence in Kashmir exposes the loopholes in the registration process and unchecked credentials of doctors in Kashmir private hospitals.

In this regard, the Chief Medical Officer has also formed a panel to probe into the death of a woman soon after delivery at a private hospital.

However, according to the officials, all the activities including the working of private hospitals go unchecked across Kashmir.

Directorate of Health Services Kashmir (DHSK) spokesman Dr Mir Mushtaq told Greater Kashmir that the department had set guidelines and registration process for the private hospitals.

“All the private hospitals and clinics have to undergo the registration process. It is the responsibility of these private hospitals to check the credentials of the doctors when they hire from outside Kashmir or in Kashmir," he said.

Dr Mushtaq said that the department could take further action if it receives any complaints regarding the doctors.

“However, so far there has been no complaint registered in the department,” he said.

A senior official in the Health Department said that the government had asked the concerned officers to monitor the private hospitals.

At least 45 private hospitals including nursing homes have been registered with the Directorate of Health Services Kashmir (DHSK).

As per the guidelines and rules, every doctor must go through the registration process before starting practice in Kashmir.

The doctors can get themselves registered and start medical practice only after the DHSK completes the verification of their degrees from the Medical Council of India (MCI) and the concerned institutions.

However, according to the official, doctors including non-local doctors who practice in private hospitals in Kashmir do not follow these rules and risk the lives of the people.

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