Mixing of healthcare and commercial interests

Ali Al Matani  –
ali.matani2@gmail.com –

At a time when the private sector is welcomed in the field of healthcare, there are some practices that don’t fit the scheme of things. The mixing of healthcare and commercial interests is one such wrong practice.
This issue is significant as it is linked directly to the most precious aspects of our life, namely wellbeing.
Among the worst practices that will have terrible consequences is the existence of hospitals and pharmacies both owned by the same company, which makes the patient a profit-generating customer when seeking cure, and again another customer when buying medicines.
Both cases must be considered an assault against the priceless human life.
Dealing with patients only to make profit is a moral crisis that should be stopped as early as possible, in order to ensure neutrality and integrity in the crucial healthcare field.
Organising the private health sector requires tremendous efforts to correct the wrong systems that don’t serve the growth of the sector.
It is a case of conflict of interests, with the patients who seek sound health being heavily exploited and drained financially by profit-greedy business interests.
If investors lack ethical values, they don’t hesitate to use hospitals and pharmacies as a means to drain the patient mercilessly and to destroy him at the health and financial level, by imposing rules and regulations that prevent patients from speaking against hospital authorities, and forcing them to buy a lot of highly expensive medicines, most of which the patient doesn’t even need.
But the doctors indulge in this practice in order to market some medicines.
There are several other malpractices that really finish or even kill the patients.
Nowadays, we find many hospitals and health centres having their own pharmacies, which the investor has built as a vital part of the healthcare centre.
As part of an unethical deal between the doctors and pharmacists, they agree on forcing the patient to buy excess medicines that they don’t need, just for the sake of business.
It’s the patient who suffers in this
business deal.
This is what we can call medical corruption; this matter requires the intervention of Ministry of Health and other related parties so that the lives of innocent people are saved.
Separating the pharmacies from hospitals or medical centres in the private sector should be accorded high priority. This can be achieved by not allowing the same investors to own both hospitals and pharmacies.
This will guarantee integrity, neutrality and transparency. In addition, those in the medical field must have some professional ethics and they must stop using patients as a tool to achieve wealth quickly.
The Ministry of Health is concerned with organising this sector and legitimising it. It should impose restrictions upon those who care less for patients.
Unfortunately, several private hospitals resort to such unethical practices.
However, there are private hospitals that are sincere and committed to ethical standards of the profession. Some of them didn’t build any pharmacies to exploit patients, and for sure, their integrity forced them not to get into this pharmacy business, unlike most hospitals.
Of course, patients are not committed to buy from the pharmacies attached to the hospitals; however, when the doctors forget their morals, and recommend a certain pharmacy, that is clearly a violation of principles, which not all the patients are aware of.
The innocent patients are thus cheated easily.