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Price reduction of blood tests: Health Ministry to investigate implementation

The Health Ministry will be conducting investigations as to whether or not the reduction of charges for blood tests in private hospitals and laboratories is being offered to the public appropriately.

Accordingly, the Ministry of Health affirmed that Health Minister, Dr. Rajitha Senaratne had instructed the National Medicines Regulatory Authority to conduct investigations into the matter.

Food and Drugs Inspectors have thus been instructed to submit a report to the Minister based on their findings.

The Health Ministry has also planned to take legal action against private hospitals and laboratories that refuse to offer the reduced price to patients.

The price revision will remain effective until further notice under the Private Hospital Regulatory Act of Sri Lanka.

The Health Minister announced that the maximum charge incurred for blood tests and the dengue antigen test must be Rs. 250 and Rs. 1000 respectively.

He also instructed hospitals to provide the test reports to patients within half an hour of venipuncture.

Meanwhile, Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne also announced through an extraordinary gazette notice that complaints had been received regarding the improper execution of the price reduction of eye lenses used in lens replacement surgery.

The Ministry of Health said that the benefit extended to the public was being monopolized by companies supplying the lenses as well as certain ophthalmologists.

Minister of Health, Dr. Rajitha Senaratne stated that although the prices of lenses supplied by 38 different companies had been reduced, the public was ultimately being entitled to a reduction of only Rs. 2000.

He confirmed that purchasers must rightfully be offered a reduction far greater than a mere Rs. 2000 and added that an investigation had accordingly been launched to examine the issue.

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