In a first, Kamal Nath mulls Right to Health Bill

Deccan Chronicle.  | Rabindra Nath Choudhury

Nation, Current Affairs

State depts to be held accountable for disease outbreak.

Kamal Nath

Bhopal: In a first of its kind initiative in the country, Kamal Nath government is mulling to table ‘Right to Health’ legislation in the upcoming winter session of Assembly, guaranteeing quality healthcare to all citizens of Madhya Pradesh.

The proposed legislation has, significantly, provides to hold state government departments concerned accountable for outbreak of diseases such as dengue or H1N1.

The proposed ‘Right to Health’ legislation envisaged establishment of forums for grievance redressal with regards to deficiency in healthcare facilities.

“Failure to provide healthcare by the state government will have legal consequences,” a spokesman of state health department said here on Saturday.

A two-day ‘Right to Health’ conclave organised by the state government here to give shape to the proposed legislation ended on Saturday.

“The legislation will ensure basic as well as quality healthcare particularly for rural people in the state,” Madhya Pradesh health minister Tulsi Silawat said.

According to the draft proposal of the ‘Right to Health’ legislation, delivery of basic healthcare services would be ensured within three km, and primary healthcare within 12 km, while medical facility for serious illness and critical illness would be ensured within 50km (or a one-hour journey) and within 150 km respectively.

The proposed ‘Right to Health’ legislation also proposed to lay down
specific standards and norms for safety and quality of all healthcare services, treatment protocols, infrastructure, equipment, drugs, and diagnostics.

“Adequate financial and institutional arrangement has to be put in place to implement the Act. It will be a challenge for the state government to bring the Act into force,” a senior bureaucrat involved in framing the legislation told this newspaper on condition of anonymity.