Unique Identity Numbers to hospitals: IRDA
With a view to aid in identifying hospitals and gathering information regarding various charges imposed by them on different medical procedures, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) has begun a process to provide unique identity numbers to hospitals.
IRDA is working with national accreditation agencies to uniquely identify hospitals, which will involve providing them identity numbers that will be linked with the pin code of the area and the name of hospitals.
Why IRDA wants to assign unique identity numbers to hospitals?
It has come into the notice of IRDA that different hospitals are imposing different charges on patients with medical cover. Lack of data in the medical insurance segment has led to instances where hospitals have charged irrational amounts from these patients. This is the main reason why IRDA wants to give identity numbers to hospitals. It will enable the regulatory body to see the charges these hospitals are charging from patients for different treatments. The transactional data being collected from health insurers will enable it to compare the charges for a particular disease or a procedure by one hospital versus another.
As per Insurance Information Bureau, which is under the administrative control of the regulator and is collecting and compiling the data for assigning unique identity numbers to hospitals, this step would help streamline prices apart from curbing fraudulent billing.