Consent of three doctors mandatory for prison hospital admission

Prisons inmates seeking medicalcare henceforth must obtain consent of three doctors before they can be transferred to the prison hospital for treatment.

This is in keeping with a decision made by Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs Minister D. M. Swaminathan.

The minister has ordered Prisons Commissioner General H.M.N.C.Dhanasinghe to see that steps are taken hereafter to carry out prison inmate hospitalisations only upon approval of three doctors.

They would be the doctor in charge of the prison, the OPD doctor and the ward doctor. The former two may give their consent for the admission while the ward doctor would be the one to diagnose and recommend the inmate for hospitalisation, Prison Reforms Ministry sources said.

Minister Swaminathan said, he decided to make the ‘three doctor’ consent mandatory for prison inmate hospitalisation after considering numerous complaints received by him from various sections of society that the prison inmate hospitalisation process is flawed.

“There were allegations of misconduct in this respect,” he said.Ministry sources said the allegations are mostly associated with prisoners with political influence getting their way into the prison hospital.

The minister had asked that diagnose reports of inmates seeking medical treatment at the prison hospital should be submitted to the ministry for necessary investigations. 

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