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Doctors, diagnostic cartels fleecing patients: Harsh Vardhan Dipak Kumar Dash,TNN

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Expressing concern over a likely "cartelization" among diagnostic centres and pathological laboratories in Delhi, health minister Harsh Vardhan on Tuesday told Lok Sabha that patients are subjected to unnecessary tests by the doctors who are guided by the "lucre of commissions" offered by diagnostic centres.

He also said the government is considering to bring some type of oversight for pathological laboratories and diagnostic centres to end the corrupt practices including possible nexus between doctors and the laboratories, and cartelization among diagnostic centres.
Vardhan was laying a statement in the House on a sting operation by a private TV channel, which exposed some doctors collecting 30-50% commissions on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), CT Scans, ultra sound, routine pathological tests.

"A kind of cartelization has resulted in so far as this aspect of the medical economy of Delhi is concerned. All the private laboratories and diagnostic centres charge roughly the same amounts for pathological tests and clinical examinations. Patients have no option but to pay up the exorbitant fees...This exacerbates their physical and mental agony," he said.

On the likely doctor and diagnostic centre nexus, the minister said that the "racket" is leading to unjustified profit margins. "This is apparent from the rate of commissions paid. In quite a few parts of the sting operation, the staff of the diagnostic centres reveal that they pay referring doctors as much as 50% commission on expensive tests like MRI. This indicates that even after paying the huge rate of commission these clinics report good profits," Vardhan said.
Doctors, diagnostic cartels fleecing patients: Harsh Vardhan - The Times of India
This is one great game in Delhi (I live in this city for the past 28 years). All are connected - Doctors, Chemists, Diagnostic Centres, medical device suppliers & Insurance Companies. Last year I too ended up having an experience courtesy this cartel. Went to a doctor to check diabetes (routine) - a doctor who moved into a nearby commercial centre behind our apartment. He first asked me do a blood test and insisted on running a certain blood test from a specific place. I too was bit shocked with the result - he looked at the report and was excited (I was standing okay, but he acted as if he is falling unconcious). he wrote a series of medicines for a month - I went to a chemist shop (none of the medicine was available). I called him. Oh ho. don't worry, i will arrange it. Can u believe at 11 pm, one guy landed up driving his bike some 8 kms to deliver the medicines.. I was shocked at the service... After 20 days, I went back again, same routine, now he changed the medicines completely. The surprise was in store. I got out of the doctor's clinic, I was 3 other patients waiting for me when I was coming out. I get a call from the same chap (by now he was in possession of the medicine list). The doctor after my departure, before calling the next patient, called up this crook and gave him the list !!! THIS IS WHAT HAPPEN IN DELHI. Unfortunate part is :; EVERYONE IS CONNECTED...
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