Concern Over Supreme Court’s Ruling to Provide Free COVID-19 Testing

Team SoOLEGAL 10 Apr 2020 4:38pm

Concern Over Supreme Court’s Ruling to Provide Free COVID-19 Testing

A decision by India's Supreme Court to make testing for corona virus free of cost has imposed an unfair financial burden on medical organisationswhich might lead to a decline in testing, said business leaders and health experts.

Like many industries in India, private medical firms are struggling financially and go bankrupt if they will have to test for free without any financial assistance.

Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Executive Chairman of Biocon Limited, one of India's largest biotech companies, said that it would be impractical to expect private institutions to run on credit.

"Humanitarian in intent but impractical to implement" Shaw said on twitter.

"These are small companies they’re providing testing at cost and not profiteering. How will they pay their employees” Shaw added.

The SC, responding to a petition for public interest, said on Wednesday that private medical institutions should play a philanthropic role in a time of national crisis and it would not permit a situation where India's poor population cannot afford a virus test that is rapidly spreading across the world. A fee of 4,500 rupees being charged by the private labs was found unfeasible by the Supreme Court, because it may not be within the means of a large population of the country.

The Apex court further stated that the issue of reimbursing these laboratories for operating the hundreds of thousands of novel coronavirus tests in the world's second most populous nation would be considered later on. 

Tagged: Supreme Court   COVID-19   Free Testing   corona virus   private medical firms   Biocon Limited   Kiran Mazumdar Shaw  
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