IV. COPASAH Thematic Hub on Accountability of the Private Medical Sector
Today despite massive growth of the private medical sector across the world including LMICs, and major social evidence of the negative consequences of market failure, regulation of private medical sector remains patchy and weak in most LMICs. Despite large scale dissatisfaction related to malpractices, unethical practices, overcharging, and violation of patients rights, movements around these issues are often non-existent or very small. Hence there is urgent need for a platform which would help develop the discourse on accountability of the private medical sector through involvement of activists and practitioners, along with facilitating exchange of experiences and perspectives.
Given this context the COPASAH thematic hub on “Patients rights and private medical sector accountability” would strive to develop a conceptual discourse and evolving framework for social accountability of the private medical sector, keeping in view the context of LMICs esp. in South Asia. The hub would promote networking among civil society organisations and networks on issues related to private health sector regulation and patient's rights, with a focus on South Asia. These efforts would support and complement existing networks like the People’s Health Movement. The thematic hub will engage in relevant knowledge generation through publication of papers and policy briefs. It is expected that this hub would help to orient and inform health activists and civil society members, enabling them to raise key issues related to the private healthcare sector, in the spirit of accountability and rights.
Key planned activities by the Hub
The thematic hub will work through organising global thematic webinars, networking and alliance building in South Asia, regional consultations, and capacity building of activists. Key activities would include -
1. Forming an e-group of the Thematic Hub, and sharing regularly about accountability of private medical sector and patients rights, especially in South Asia context.
2. Organising a Regional consultation on accountability of private medical sector and patients rights involving civil society activists from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka, during December 2017 at Mumbai.
3. Organising webinars on accountability of private medical sector and patients rights, focussed on South Asia context but with relevance for various LMICs. These would have involvement of interested civil society activists and health professionals from various countries.
4. Developing policy briefs and widely disseminating these; sharing literature on this theme, which would be uploaded on COPASAH website.
5. Preparations related to the theme for the Global symposium on Health sector accountability, including organising various workshops and sessions.
SATHI, a Health rights organisation based in Pune, India would be anchoring this thematic hub.