What a name is this? – (Not to be confused with Ivan Illych’s Medical Nemesis?!).
In a mixed and open economy, entrepreneurialism is given the needed freedom to flourish, but this at times is also, ominously, allowed unchecked rein.
Where regulatory controls and sanctions against abuse pertain, but are applied haphazardly or perfunctorily, the consequences can be dire, as has been evident in financial institutions, private corporations as well as public entities all over the world.
Untold harm can be done to end -users, stakeholders and societies generally when standards are glaringly and wilfully compromised for narrow selfish motives or for unbridled monetary gain. This becomes intolerable where human health and well-being are at stake. Cases world-wide abound in examples of institutional ill-treatment of vulnerable clients. Certain private care homes for the elderly have time and again been found to have abysmally failed to provide a decent and dignified service. Cutting corners to reduce costs, whether in providing meals or in other critical care components, has been an identifiable factor, as well as suboptimal managerial competence and plain badness on the part of certain care givers.
Over time, as in the educational sector, there has been a proliferation of private clinics in Mauritius, the preferred ports of call for those well able to afford them, and those who end up there as an urgent life saving measure, and who hope to be able to deal with the prohibitive bills somehow. Health insurance is often the financial fodder on which these health providers must feed, aside from the resources of the exceptionally well-heeled.
Although the ostensible and evident intent is the delivery of care to the best of their abilities and capacities, in practice (and this must be confronted as a fact), it is being averred, these private clinics (at any rate a number of them), would appear to be operating with clearly targeted financial returns in mind, which in turn drive the care provision planning and delivery.
Beyond the critical interventions , in terms of surgery and intensive care recovery , if additional bed occupancy days can be extended in one way or the other, then ( stating this advisedly),  greater capital kudos is assured. With an overreliance on a plethora of medical gadgetry, per se of undoubted utility, these clinics can pile up the costs every time they decide that it is expedient to run some tests. Patients and their families are in no position to really question and scrutinise these clinical decisions. All they do is pick up the tab and settle the toll of bills.
The motives and professionalism of the direct care givers and clinical interventionists cannot be automatically impugned, and the excellent lifesaving and health enhancing work they do must be extolled unreservedly. But, it is pertinent  to ponder to what  extent, if unwittingly, they do the bidding of the higher authorities  who have  overriding business interests at  the forefront of their minds, that is  money –making  pure and simple,? And there are the professionals’ own survival interests and advancements to also consider.
Profit-making is not the issue, but profiteering where patently the case, is the issue and one that must be interrogated most vigorously. It is a slippery slope to a health market going down the tube with the well-being and livelihoods of many imperilled.
The government regulatory bodies and the Ministry of Health must take active steps to address issues of needless overstaying of patients to maximise revenue, monitor the quality of care given and the associated costs. Transparency and accountability must be ensured at the end of the day.
If private educational institutions are subjected to state-instigated scrutiny, why not the private health providers, where necessary, and where the human impact can be severe?  Let them not be detracted by excessive mercantilism, from the noble aim of first and foremost caring for and treating the desperately ill.