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AIIMS leading a global initiative

October 8, 2012

Unwarranted procedures and diagnostic tests put extra financial burden on the healthcare system and cause increased morbidity and mortality. For example, a person suffering from muscular chest pain does not require angiography. Still, many hospitals routinely put such patients through this procedure,” the doctor said.
Experts cite studies showing rampant use of unnecessary procedures in India.
For instance, hormone replacement therapy is carried out in post-menopausal women despite there being no evidence that it reduces cardiac events.
Similarly, antioxidant vitamins are commonly prescribed for reducing cardiovascular disease though there’s no evidence of its efficacy. The Elisa test has till recently been widely used for diagnosis of tuberculosis. It has since been banned due to its unreliability.
The DGHS also said patient treatment cannot be taken as a clinical trial. “Stem cell therapy is being offered for spine injuries by many hospitals and patients are charged for that.
“This despite the fact that there’s no proven effect of the therapy. This can only be stopped through patient awareness and strict monitoring by government agencies,” Prasad said.
AIIMS is leading a first-ofits kind global initiative to promote evidence-based healthcare. Said institute director, Dr R C Deka, “Awareness of the latest evidence-based treatments is necessary. However, treatment costs should also be borne in mind by doctors while suggesting procedures for patients.”
Deka also said overprescription was also leading to immunity against many antibiotics, a problem that was likely to become serious in the future.
Standardized procedures should help in curbing this trend, he added.

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Categories: Public Health
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