Pvt. hospitals’ plea irks government doctors

Indian consultants:

By Don Asoka Wijewardena

The Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) on Tuesday accused the private hospitals of instituting legal proceedings to facilitate the registration process of 184 Indian Consultants in the private sector.

The GMOA said it was aware that the Indian Consultants were practising medicine at the private hospitals with the annual registration from the SLMC, but the Indian doctors were without the required qualifications to be consultants.

The GMOA had also requested the Health Ministry to continue the proper technical evaluation process of such doctors, because of the 184 Indian doctors, about 18 had failed the technical evaluation carried out by the Health Ministry, GMOA Media Spokesman Dr. Navin de Soysa said.

Dr. Soysa said that many patients, especially surgical patients, who had been treated by some Indian doctors at private hospitals, had been rushed to the NHSL (National Hospital of Sri Lanka) or other State hospitals with post-surgery complications.

Many private hospitals had exploited the economically better off patients in various ways. They employed the Indian doctors and in a few months they would be made consultants, the GMOA spokesman said.

When contacted a leading private hospital director, on condition of anonymity, dismissed the allegations made by the GMOA. The government doctors or consultants came to the private hospitals after 4.00 p.m. It would be impossible to provide a better health care service to the patients under such circumstances. As far as he was aware, all Indian Consultants registered to practise medicine in Sri Lanka, were fully-fledged Consultants. He pointed out that Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena had given instructions to the Health Ministry to appoint a representative to the technical evaluation committee from the private hospitals, but the Ministry had not done so and as a result the committee was free do what it wanted at present, he said.

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