The government moves to curb profiteer labs, fixes swine flu test at Rs 4,500 only
Kejriwal Government Shows the Way for Tackling Swine Flu Blues
New Delhi, January 19: Escalating market around swine flu has been snubbed by newly installed Arvind Kejriwal government.
The AAP government has moved swiftly to stop the market from making a ‘killing’ from people’s sickness.
Delhi government’s move to curb profiteers in the wake of swine flu scare is being widely being praised. It has fixed swine flu test at Rs. 4,500 only. ‘Rates cannot be left to demand and supply’- this stand of the Delhi health minister Satyendra jain is also being appreciated widely.
It is felt that the central and other state governments should also follow in the foot prints of Delhi government to rationalize the testing and treatment costs. Dr. Anil Bansal, President, Delhi Medical Association has said, praising the government’s move ‘In the scenario of an epidemic, the government needs to be stern to snub profiteers first.’
In the light of complaints that private pathology labs were making the hay while people are reeling under the scare and overcharging swine flu tests, Delhi government on Wednesday (January 18) curbed profiteering by sternly capping the price at Rs 4,500, saying those not falling in line would be blacklisted. Though test is offered free in government labs but they are not sufficient in number to handle the rush. Delhi health minister Satyendar Jain received complains that some labs did it at even as high as Rs 10,000. Complaints could be processed through a helpline number, 011-22307145 if private labs continued to over charge. It is yet to be tested how much the market conforms to the government’s dictate, though some more reputed ones namely Dr. Dang and Dr. Lal pathlabs have announced to deescalate and conform to the cap.
1,700 swine flu cases have so far surfaced, though number of infected persons is estimated at manifold. With six deaths so far, the demand for test has escalated.
The medical merchandise market has always been ruthless. Before a disease start killing, the market starts making a killing to fill its coffers much before an epidemic starts killing.