Standardised pricing for health care needed to prevent patients’ exploitation by private sector

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HPCZ Council Registrar and Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Aaron Mujajati
The Health Professions Council of Zambia (HPCZ) has called for the introduction of minimum standardised pricing of Health care services.

Council Registrar and Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Aaron Mujajati says lack of standardised pricing for health care, provision of medicines has contributed to exploitation of patients by some health practitioners.

He said when patients seek private health care, they were prescribed with alot of medicines and other medical tests which were not necessary but designed to extort money from patients at exorbitant prices.

Dr Mujajati said in collaboration with government, HPCZ would ensure that minimum pricing and practice standard were put in place in order to promote fairness and efficiency in health care management.

He was speaking at the Zambia High Commission in Pretoria South Africa when he paid a courtesy call on Zambia’s High Commissioner to that country His Excellency Mr Emmanuel Mwamba.

Dr Mujajati observed that the rationalisation of pricing will promote world class investment in the health sector in many parts of the country.

And Zambia’s High Commissioner to South Africa His Excellency Mr Emmanuel Mwamba said the newly introduced health policy will help many Zambians access high quality health services locally.

Mr Mwamba said the newly introduced health insurance policy was already attracting private sector investments interest to the country from South Africa.

He disclosed that a number of insurance companies have approached the High Commission on the possibilities of investing in the health insurance sector in Zambia.

He added that Zambia’s suitable policy environment coupled with her geographical location was ideal to attract setting up of first class health facilities that would effectively service the SADC region.

18 COMMENTS

  1. You can not standardize the prices. Just charge all those ( hospitals and doctors ) over prescribing medical services with incompetence and withraw their membership otherwise we re in a liberalized economy and it not possible for us to ve uniform price

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    • @ Chilu I don’t think you know what you are saying or understand his point. Standardisation of health care and medicines a normal practice in developed countries. He’s definitely speaking what he has researched. There’s no country in the developed world where health care is not caped. He is not a politician say whatever he want to say. This is researched data.

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    • What has Zambia done to deserve Mujajati! Where there no other health professionals for this position.

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    • Exactly, you’d be lucky if they prescribe only 6 different medicines for your common cold & all that medicine would only be available in their own pharmacy.

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  2. @Lombe (MA). ‘This is researched data.’ Hehehehe!
    What is the MINIMUM standardised pricing of healthcare?
    This article is in reported speech by Lusaka Times. Do not trust LT to report accurately, unless they are quoting directly what was said.

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    • Hahaha! I have submitted articles to LT. I know.

      I’m not referring to this article as researched data. Dr. Mujajati came to this conclusion after doing his research. I was answering to Chilu’s opinion. I know of manufacturers of medicine here in America who have been arrested and are serving jail terms for taking advantage of people by charging exorbitant prices on the medicine. So I know what he’s saying is true.

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  3. I agree with the idea of standardizing health care prices because I have personal experience with my mother when she was under private care there. My mother suffered with high blood pressure and as family we decided to register her with a private practitioner who prescribed her a lot of unnecessary drugs and as a result of polypharmacy , she developed renal failure and she sadly passed away . My point is that this doctor was prescribing unnecessarily and he kept on changing drugs and adding on without proper instructions to the patient and carers. I discovered this malpractice too late when I visited and I reviewed the treatment plan which was appalling. Meanwhile prescriptions were being issued and most were doubling up . Not good !!

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  4. What a relief to know professional bodies like Dr. Mujajati’s HPCZ are aware of what the vulnerable patient is being subjected to. I am a senior citizen living with diabetes, hypertension and psoriasis. Whenever I go to Victoria Hospital I walk out with brown bags full of medicines like I’m walking out of a grocery store! Each time I go to replenish my stocks, the doctor gives me additional medicines, most of which is unnecessary! The bill gets higher on each visit. Those on medical insurance or company medical schemes are even more vulnerable because it’s easier to append a signature to a bill than to pull out a wallet! On my last trip, a packet of ASPRIN K170=00, and a small tub of 14 tablets of VALUS PAINKILLERS K80=00! So, I can’t wait to have these exploitative sharks regulated…

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  5. The trouble with Zambian managers. Before doing their home work, they start by making wild statements. Show us that standard price list so that we know you are a responsible manager. Managers who use future tense instead of present tense are failures whose primary aim is Muzungu wanga anikonde! Yes reforms are required but we want a better way to manage that without painting all private practitioners with the same dirty brush! Mujajati is not an expert in how to run health care. He only has theory and not practical. He has no practical experience of how much it costs to run health services. Conflict of interests cannot be ruled out because he runs healthcare insurance so he wants fewer claims. It costs money to set up and run these services. Whatever minimum pricing you come up with must…

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  6. Whatever minimum pricing you come up with must address costs involved. Zambians of course are too used to free things but must be made to understand that quality costs money! Above all we are a free market economy where uniform pricing has no place. It’s high time private practitioners formed an association to help challenge bad policies like Mujajati’s!

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  7. It is a known fact that most doctors like Chilufya and Mujajati make very bad managers. Not surprising because they are only trained to manage diseases and not people … kikiki. UNZA must xhange the Curriculum to infuse some aspects of Management Course for our friends who were not born leaders. Bottomline is if our people can’t afford quality, they should go to a government clinic or hospital and queue all day! The private practitioners have brought a lot of sanity to healthcare in Zambia and should be treated as quality partners and not to be treated like criminals or charlatans! Pricing should be dictated primarily by every institution’s cost structure which cannot be expected to be uniform across board. I am sure uniformity is Mujajati’s interpretation of Standard which is wrong!

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  8. What Mujajati is trying to do is against the tenets of a free market. No one forces you to consult at those institutions. You are to go anywhere, including Chingwere clinic. How does your statement connect with your proposed increase in annual fees from K2590 to K18,000. I think you need an injection of grey matter

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  9. The pharmacy industry is now the preserve of Asians who negotiate secretly among themselves to fix exploitative prices.The exploitation of Zambians through such fixed high prices is because of the absence of an effective government

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    • Asian pharmacies in town will sell you baxylin cough syrup @ K20, whereas those in the compounds run by Zambians charge K40 for the same.

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