Thailand’s government and the country’s medical community are debating the proposed new legislation to provide comprehensive coverage to patients against medical malpractice. The state has said that the law would strengthen patients’ rights and reduce the time and money spent in litigation, while health professionals claim it would add to medical expenses and the workload of practitioners.
Under the Medical Malpractice Victim Protection Bill, all hospitals and clinics would be required to make financial contributions to a special compensation fund for patients who are victims of medical malpractice. The government says that the bill will provide for a no-faults compensation system that will allow patients to apply for support without having to go to court or have their case be subject to a lengthy investigation.
However, medical professionals are worried that the legislation could pave the way for even more lawsuits, using the granting of compensation under the scheme as proof of malpractice. In particular, opponents of the bill are concerned about section 45 of the draft legislation, which says that doctors could face criminal charges and punishment if convicted of medical malpractice.
With such a threat hanging over their heads, doctors say that health care professionals might be reluctant to take on high-risk cases, and would be forced to work more slowly and cautiously while seeking to avoid mistakes. The new law would result in reduced efficiency, according to Somkid Auapisithwong of the Thai Federation of Doctors, Main Hospitals and General Hospitals.
Note: This article was published on behalf of Oxford Business Group, the views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily state or reflect the views of Thailand Business News
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Has Covid-19 prompted the Belt and Road Initiative to go green?
– Chinese overseas investment dropped off in 2020
– Government remains committed to the wide-ranging infrastructure programme
– Sustainability, health and digital to be the new cornerstones of the initiative
Following a year of coronavirus-related disruptions, China appears to be placing a greater focus on sustainable, digital and health-related projects in its flagship Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
As OBG outlined in April last year, the onset of Covid-19 prompted questions about the future direction of the BRI.
Launched in 2013, the BRI is an ambitious international initiative that aims to revive ancient Silk Road trade routes through large-scale infrastructure development.
By the start of 2020 some 2951 BRI-linked projects – valued at a total of $3.9trn – were planned or under way across the world.
However, as borders closed and lockdowns were imposed, progress stalled on a number of major BRI infrastructure developments.
In June China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that 30-40% of BRI projects had been affected by the virus, while a further 20% had been “seriously affected”. Restrictions on the flow of Chinese workers and construction supplies were cited as factors behind project suspensions or slowdowns in Pakistan, Cambodia and Indonesia, among other countries.
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