The project has emerged from Dr Shukla’s social media campaign which he launched with a tweet on Independence Day. The tweets demanded empowerment of patients’ rights in India and regulation of private hospitals by the government.
According to him, the campaign to strengthen patients’ rights in India began with a well-attended protest in New Delhi in February which led to two outcomes: First, the Union health ministry acted upon the proposed Charter of Patients’ Rights sent by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and endorsed about 7 of the 17 recommended rights. A charter of 13 rights with a list of dos and don’ts to be adopted by clinical establishments, including private hospitals, was then drawn up and circulated to all state governments for implementation.
The second outcome of the Delhi meet was that the minimum standards (of facilities and services provided by clinical establishments) under the Central Clinical Establishment Act, 2017 (to provide registration and regulation of clinical establishments) was set in motion, he said.
The campaign elicited a strong public response on social media reflecting anger and frustration against private hospitals for a variety of violations.