Rajasthan Right To Health Bill: The Rajasthan Government’s Right To Health Bill ensures that all residents of the state have access to free Outpatient Department (OPD) and In-Patient Department (IPD) services at government health facilities. In addition, similar healthcare services will be available at select private facilities for free.
Although healthcare services at public facilities are usually provided for free or at a minimal cost, the Bill’s most important provisions refer to free treatment and care at private hospitals and doctor’s clinics.
The Right to Health Bill, which was passed by the Rajasthan Assembly on March 21, has been making headlines. Ashok Gehlot administration is facing strong opposition from the state’s private hospitals and medical professionals over the bill.
What Right to health Bill Says?
The Rajasthan government’s Right to Health Bill guarantees free outpatient and inpatient services at all government hospitals and select private facilities. It also includes free emergency services in critical times without any upfront cost. All public health facilities and some private facilities must provide free healthcare services. It includes consultations, medications, diagnostics, emergency transport, procedures, and emergency care, under the terms of the rules.
The Bill also has a penalty clause, which punishes doctors and healthcare providers who deny treatment. The first-time violator will be liable to pay a Rs 10,000 fine. While the second violation will lead to a penalty of Rs 25,000
Why is bill Important?
The data by the ministry of road and transport highways suggest that in 2021, a total number of 4,12,432 road accidents were reported across the country. It resulted in 1,53,972 deaths and injuries to another 3,84,448 persons.
In Rajasthan alone, data from open sources suggest that over 19,000 accidents took place. It results in 16,769 injuries and 9250 deaths.
Road accidents alone result in a higher number of injuries, where time is of the essence and emergency medical attention is necessary. The Right to Health Bill, as it is currently being proposed, would allow private hospitals to treat such victims even if they cannot afford it. Simply put, this means that hospitals will be required to treat patients in these situations. And under the bill, the state government will be responsible for paying for the treatment.
Why are doctors against Right to Health Bill?
In Jaipur and other parts of Rajasthan, doctors have been protesting against this bill. They say the bill is unconstitutional because it will increase bureaucratic interference in private hospitals’ functioning.
One of the main issues raised by the private hospitals was who would be responsible for paying for any free treatments provided to patients. Ashok Gehlot, the chief minister of Rajasthan, attempted to soothe concerns by stating that the state government would be responsible for paying the expenses.
Concerns about the likelihood of increased bureaucratic meddling in private hospitals’ operations were raised as well. According to Gehlot’s official statement, there will be zero interference from the government in the management of private hospitals.
There have been several unsuccessful attempts by the Rajasthan government officials to resolve the deadlock with protesting doctors.
Despite many worries, the right to health legislation will guarantee that residents have timely access to medical care. It will help to lower out-of-pocket costs. And will help to uphold residents’ rights to equity in their health and well-being.