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Cabinet nod to clinic control

Patna, Nov. 26: The cabinet today gave its nod to the Bihar Clinical Establishment (Registration & Regulation) Rules, 2013, to regulate private practitioners and nursing homes in the state.

“It would help in reining in clinics and nursing homes, which lack basic infrastructure facilities and other requirements,” cabinet secretary Brajesh Mehrotra told reporters.

According to the rules, the government shall constitute a state council for clinical establishments. The principal secretary of the health department will be the ex-officio chairman of the council. It would compile and update the register of clinical establishments in the state and send monthly returns for updating the national register.

The rules also prescribe the setting up of a registering authority for clinical establishments in each district. The district magistrates would be the chairman of the authority. If a person running a private nursing home or clinic violates the provisions of the act, he/she would be punished with Rs 10,000 for first offence and 50,000 for the second offence and Rs 5 lakh for any subsequent offence.

Any person aggrieved by the authority’s decision can appeal to the state council within three months.

It had passed the Bihar Clinical Establishment (Registration & Regulation) Act in 2011, but decided to adopt the central legislation of clinical establishment act 2010 by repealing an earlier one.

Opposition from the Indian Medical Association and Bihar Health Services Association (BHSA) led to the delay in framing the rules.

BHSA general secretary Ajay Kumar said: “The association has reservations about district magistrate being made the authority to clear the registration of nursing homes. It would just increase bureaucratic control. The penalty of Rs 5 lakh is also exorbitant.”

It is also opposed to the clause that states in an emergency case, the doctor present would have to stabilise the patient before referring him/her elsewhere, but is silent on the payment for treating or stabilising the patient.

In other decisions, the cabinet gave its nod to notify the Senior resident/tutor and Bihar Medical Education Services, Recruitment, Appointment and Promotion (Amendment) Rules, 2013, and appointment of retired teachers in government secondary and higher secondary schools on contract up to the age of 65 years.