Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Hospital Credit Database

I heard yesterday that some private hospitals are planning to have "hospital holidays" to protest a piece of legislation which they say will allow their patients to evade paying the bills they owe the hospitals. On the other hand, it is evident that the bill seeks to protect poor and helpless people from being exploited by some private hospitals. So what to do? I suggest that the private hospitals create a database that would be accessible to all of them where they could cross check their patients. Should a patient be found to be an abuser of the said law, they would be banned from using the hospital's facilities. Of course, this is, in a limited sort of way, a violation of the principle of treating patients first before checking on their financial capacity to pay, but I see this as a proper deterent against abusers of the law. It means they could only abuse the law once, and when they do, they should beware the fact that the next time they need proper medical treatment in a private hospital, they might not be admitted.

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