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Right to Health Bill
News: The Rajasthan government has recently passed the Right to Health Act. This made Rajasthan the first state in India to pass the Right to Health (RTH) bill. But the doctors in the State are protesting and terming it as a ‘draconian law’.
The bill allows free access to outpatient and inpatient services in all government and selected private hospitals in the state.
Rajasthan’s RTH is a legal entitlement for the patient which will prevent many doctors from extracting (not earning) money from patients
Rajasthan has one of the highest incidences of violence against healthcare professionals in the country. Violence
against healthcare professionals is due to mistrust between patients and doctors. The RTH bill will increase trust in the system, and ensure doctors work hand-inhand with the poor and the have-nots.
Why are doctors opposing to the Bill?
As per official data, more than 78% of healthcare in India is now delivered by private players. At this juncture, providing free emergency treatment and care will upset the entire private healthcare model foundation.
Lack of clarity and mistrust in the functioning of system. There is no clear definition of what can be classified as a medical emergency. Bureaucratic and political control to admitting or reimbursing payment for patients.
Does the Indian Constitution guarantee Right to Health?
The Indian Constitution does not explicitly talk about a right to health.
A “right to health”, in theory, is derived from the right to life and liberty as guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution.
Previously, courts have highlighted the State’s obligation to protect and promote the health of citizens, pointing to Constitutional provisions such as Article 38 (promoting the welfare of people) and Article 47 (which directs the government to meet the nutrition and health requirements of the population).