>>JEM, I really dont think encouraging medical tourism is a good idea. By all means, we should build more hospitals, graduate more doctors... but IMO even so we wont have enough space for everyone in India for a good long time.
Boss, I’ll have to clarify upfront that I don’t know a whole lot about the medical industry. So my views are limited to general observations which may be wrong for whatever reason and I’ll be happy to change my outlook on this. I feel that the medical industry should be allowed to develop with minimum interference. As such:
1. Enough space for everyone is something I think everybody would agree with as well, but it is a fact of life that not all will be able to afford equal access.
2. These are private hospitals, with no government financial input as far as I can tell. Their existence allows those who can actually afford it to benefit and perhaps frees up some space at the government facilities.
3. Thirdly, it is not that these hospitals will be able to accommodate those who cannot afford it (without themselves going into the red) if we decide that foreigners should not come in numbers. That is to say it is not a question of replacement.
4. As the profit motive drives these enterprises as much as the Hippocratic ideal, it is quite certain that the greater the demand the greater will become their ability to supply. In other words, if they are allowed to be profitable the prospect for them to treat greater numbers becomes higher. Their desire to make more money will prevail. At least we can be sure that this will be a far greater motivating factor to create space than pretty much anything else.
>>It justs seems wrong to me, that Indians dont receive treatment, while exclusive foreign patient officers are being deputed all over the place.
As I understand it, it is not that Indians do not receive treatment per se it is that Indians who cannot afford these hospitals do not while foreigners who can do. I am aware that there are situations where there is no room because of the demand, but this is a function of supply issues that are far more easily remedied by the profit incentive than any legislative action. I am not aware that foreigners actually get a preference over Indians willing to pay the same amount of money. It is probably first come first served.
On the question of healthcare for the poor who cannot afford these hospitals anyway, i.e. whether or not foreigners are treated there, the answer must touch a whole different set of issues – ranging from social welfare to what not, where the government may more accurately be said to have a role.
>>IMO, medical treatment for foreigners should only be on the grounds if it is unavailable in their country or something. And certainly not for Amrikis and Angrezes flocking to India because the medical system in their countries has gone haywire.
I am in comprehensive disagreement here
. This will only succeed in creating a whole satellite industry dedicated to the circumvention of loopholes to show that such treatment is unavailable in their countries. There is no harm whatsoever in foreigners spending their money in India to get treated. It will create a whole new set of jobs for Indians who can then afford better healthcare (OK, I’m being rhetorical here, but you get my drift). Not to mention the positive psyops. My point is that, beyond the market dictated supply/demand gap that may exist in flux for Indians able to pay, there is nothing inherently wrong in having foreigners treated in India. In any case, why make things easier for the Thais and the Filipinos.
>>Im afraid I know quite well the mentality of several of my compatriots. Its not going to be long before we get firang only hospitals, just like goa has so man firnag only hotels and guest houses. If not officially, then at least through the use of rudeness and coercion.
I agree fully with the mentality issue, having experienced it myself. However, so long as the market is allowed to dictate the environment, this is not likely to occur in a manner or to a degree that it becomes disgraceful. No hospital, or hotel for that matter, can discriminate obviously. As you said, it would have to be a discrimination of the “non-tariff barrier” sort. I don’t know but have any of the hotels in Goa been taken to court? It would be fairly easy to prove that they have acted in a discriminatory way. A few such cases, which no doubt the judges will handle with the zeal one can expect in these situations plus the attendant bad publicity, and the owners will be disinclined to continue with the overt and covert discrimination.
The other issue is one of money. If these hotels/hospitals raise their fees to a degree only firangs can afford – then the motive for the firangs to come to India will be removed. So they have to price competitively. Moreover, increasingly there are Indians who can afford anything the firangs can. I’m also not sure many hospitals will want a bad reputation of the sort associated with discrimination of this nature.
>>JEM, I know it seems you have strong views on the sub, but I think this really deserves a rethink. Im sorry, but I think that its going in a really bad direction, and will end in nothing good for Indian patients.
No I don’t really have especially strong views on this. I just got pissed off by KN’s moral masturbation, which is in fact a sophisticated commie wank. I do know that I had a very positive experience when I went to one of these hospitals to have my mother’s heart issues settled. The vast majority of clients there were and I expect are Indians. But they did have quite a number of foreigners as well.
As a matter of principle I agree with you, every Indian should have access to healthcare and definitely any Indian discriminating on the basis of skin colour or whatever should have his ass sued to hell – in any industry. I just don’t agree that preventing foreigners from getting treatment in India will actually help in achieving that.