LETTERS: Unscrupulous hospitals

Most urban people have these days easy access to health delivery facilities due to the establishment of many private hospitals. Thousands of people visit these hospitals everyday seeking treatment for various illnesses. The quality of their services varies depending upon the physical infrastructure, equipment and trained and qualified human resources. People are compelled to visit these private hospitals due to lack of adequate number of public hospitals and efficient services. The existing public hospitals are not in a position to cater growing number of population in the urban areas. For these reasons, urban people have no other choices but to visit the private hospitals which have monopoly. However, whether most of the people are able to afford the medical expense bills of these private hospitals or not is another question. The rates of health services of these private hospitals differ from one another in the absence of appropriate guidelines and directives of the government. Visiting patients seem to be compelled to pay heavy medical bills. The people also seem to have raised concerns about the accuracy and reliability of different pathological test results. A few months ago, it was revealed from a survey report that not all the lab technicians and radiologists engaged in different health facilities were qualified and trained.

Recently, the Department of Supply Management and Protection of Consumers’ Interest found during its inspection visits that some renowned private hospitals in the Kathmandu Valley were overcharging patients and have accordingly instructed Metropolitan Police Division (MPD) to initiate necessary action against these unscrupulous private hospitals.

Rai Biren Bangdel, Maharjgunj

Tiger census

Recently, Nepal and India have agreed to join hands in conducting tiger census for developing comprehensive strategy for surveying through unique tiger habitats on either side of the international border.

Tiger being a top predator and a transboundary mammal migrates between the two adjoining Tiger Range Countries (TRCs). Hence such joint ventures will help in generating better tiger census data and avoid counting the same individual tiger in two bordering countries.

In short, this is the beginning of a new era in Joint Conservation Initiatives (JCI); and the two pioneering nations could become a successful international model. China and Nepal have started working together in rhino conservation project. India and Bangladesh are jointly working in the conservation of the mangrove ecosystems of the Sunderbans. India, Sri Lanka and Indonesia are also planning to do some joint marine surveys.

All these are excellent news for South and SE Asia forests and wildlife conservation. However, the cooperation needs to be extended far and beyond these initial approaches.

Species like migratory birds, some species of Asiatic primates, deer and antelopes, pangolins, red panda, all species and subspecies of Asiatic elephants, rhinoceros, clouded leopards, snow leopards, common leopards, tigers and smaller wild cats also need protection.

Saikat Kumar Basu, Canada