‘Law to protect rights of patients, doctors to be enacted’

Staff Correspondent

6 April, 2018 12:00 AM printer

State Minister for Health and Family Welfare Zahid Malek on Thursday said the government is going enact a law to protect the rights of patients and doctors to bring strict discipline in the healthcare sector.

He was addressing a press conference at the ministry to share the achievements of the government in healthcare sector and future plans ahead of the World Health Day to be observed tomorrow (April 7).

He said that the out of pocket expenditure for the purpose of treatment in the country is 67 percent, of which 40 percent is spent for buying medicines.

“A cell is working to find ways to bring the cost of diagnostic test under control. A draft new law will be placed at the cabinet meeting within this month. If cabinet approves, it will go to the parliament. Both the patients and the doctors will be protected by the law, if passed,” he said.

Zahid Malek rejected a data of Bangladesh Maternal Mortality and Health Care Survey that claims more women are dying from childbirths presently than before.

The data shows 196 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in 2016, the year the survey was carried out. It was 194 in 2010 when Bangladesh witnessed a steady decline in maternal deaths from 322 in 2001.

Half of the childbirths were dealt by trained professionals in 2016. In 2010, only 27 percent women received the facilities during delivery, the report says.

Replying to a query, he said: “Most of the people avail themselves of free treatment in government hospitals. Other people who receive treatment from private hospitals and clinics are well off.”

The minister further said that the government is trying to get poverty rate dropped to below 12 percent.