Citizens have a tough time as private hospitals, clinics remain shut

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Over 45,000 medical establishments across Karnataka - hospitals, clinics and diagnostic centres downed shutters on Friday, condemning the proposed amendments to Karnataka Private Medical Establishments Act.

Private doctors are demanding that the state focus on lifting the standards of care at government hospitals before attempting to regulate private medical establishments and their doctors.

The protest called by the Karnataka chapter of the Indian Medical association (IMA) and s various other associations received widespread support from the doctors across the city who abstained from work from as early as 8 am on Friday.

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"The proposed amendment to the KPME Act is detrimental to the medical profession, " president of the Indian Medical Association's Karnataka unit H N Ravindra said. The amendment enables the government to fix prices of medical services and prescribing punishment including imprisonment for doctors in case of flaws in prices. "Blood requests for non-emergent cases will be known at the end of the day".

The Medical Council of India laid the rules for the doctors and prohibiting them from practicing in case of any errors while treating a patient, the doctors' associations in the state have been against setting up another committee. "We expect that government hospitals will be reeling with the pressure of having to deal with all the patients in need of healthcare that are being sent back from private hospitals", he said. However, the emergency wards in some private hospitals remained open.

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