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'Healthcare Sector Is A Victim Of Misregulation Rather Than Over-regulation In India'

Speaking at the 4th edition of BW Businessworld Healthcare Summit & Awards, Dr Mani mentions how over regulation in the sector will snuff out the private sector

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The private sector in India is often demeaned with corruption and selfishness, given the reality check fact that 80 per cent of the healthcare in the country is serviced by the private players.

“Recently we have heard much about how the corrupt system is the sort to be changed by radical reforms. It is set on the premise that everything is a ‘loot’ and when such words are used, you tend to lose track of the truth in the sector. Healthcare is resource intensive and if we close our eyes and do not understand the facts as they are in modern day reality, we will not have policies in touch with time.”, says Dr RK Mani, Group CEO, Nayati Healthcare, expressing concerns over the changes happening in the healthcare regulations in India.

Speaking at the 4th edition of BW Businessworld Healthcare Summit & Awards, Dr Mani mentions how over regulation in the sector will snuff out the private sector.

“We need proper regulation, rather than over regulation. The private sector cannot be made a scape goat every time. We have moved from serious flaws in the regulation to another extreme of knee jerk reaction. We have simply moved from under-regulation to disproportionate regulation. You cannot blame hospitals or private sector for under regulations. We are victims rather creators of this dis-balance”, adds Dr Mani.

Citing repercussions of ‘mis-regulation’ in the contact of drug control regulation Dr Mani says, “If the drug control is flawed or the chain of storage and distribution system is faulty, it may result in poor quality drugs being delivered. In fact, at least 40-50% drugs in the market are spurious. Regulating generic drug prescribing makes no sense and ensure quality drug delivery. We have allowed all expensive products to be sold but disallowed prescribing. This is as shallow as it can get and highly skewed.”

Capping is reasonable, but one must see the fallout of the same, says Dr Mani. Patents are an outcome of huge investments and come at a cost and the Indian government has not cared much in investing in R&D of the same.

“If you snuff out patented drugs, our population will be able to get new drugs only 7-8 years later, after the patent protection is over. It is bad business sense, as people who can afford will get what they need from somewhere else. With the huge amount of money flying out, the Indian government will tend to lose. How will the government then subsidize the rest of the population”, says Dr Mani.

Talking about accountability, Dr Mani mentions how ‘Formal’ accountability is the need of the hour and the private sector willingly wants the same.

“Formal accountability is at the doors of policy makers and more important implementers. There is already a lot of accountability in the private healthcare with consumer protection act, civil suits and now strangely criminal suits possibility. How can there be a fundamental reason to kill a patient? We are victims of misregulation”, says Dr Mani.

We do not expect charity from the government, we expect appropriateness and that is what accountability means, ends Dr Mani.

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