Fees to be guided by free market forces


  • Letters
  • Wednesday, 18 Dec 2019

THE Malaysian Dental Association hails the bold move by the government to allow free market forces to dictate the consultation fees of doctors and dentists. The fees from now on would be based on a willing seller willing buyer principle, which means they would be affordable to the public and acceptable to the healthcare providers.

This move reflects the willingness to trust and respect both the professionalism of the providers and freedom of the public to choose. The public must also continue to be increasingly well informed, educated and media savvy.

The move will also encourage providers to keep themselves on the cutting edge of their expertise, knowing that they would be duly rewarded by a well-informed and knowledgeable public.

The best way to maintain standards at an affordable level is to remove artificial constraints that require constant and costly oversight and enforcement. Instead, an open and transparent system that encourages all to be ethical and knowledgeable will prove to be better in the long run.

The PHFSA (Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act) is a comprehensive piece of legislation aimed at the private healthcare sector with detailed regulations. In the area of consultation fees, it has failed to provide a mechanism of continuous review and adjustment.

We hope therefore that the PHFSA will be revamped to cover the whole of healthcare and reflect this new trust and respect for the profession and the public. A simpler Act that covers only the essential bases without costly surveillance and enforcement will help to bring down the cost of healthcare.

PRESIDENT AND COUNCIL

Malaysian Dental Association


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