Insurance Regulatory Development Authority (IRDA) Chairman J Harinarayan, on Saturday pitched for an effective system of regulation and management of the medical care industry.

“The other area which we are concerned about is price system (in providing health care). India does not really have a very effective system for regulation and management of the medical care industry. It is something which is needed.” he said at a seminar in Chennai.

He said he would be happy if the concept of regulating the health care industry was considered by Parliament or state governments.

Talking about a host of issues related to health insurance sector at a seminar, organised by Consumer Association of India, he praised state governments run health insurance, saying they were “remarkably successful”.

Giving some statistics on insurance industry, he said in India about 9.5 crore people are covered through insurance every year raising a premium of Rs 13,500 crore. “Premiums are very low in India, compared to international standards”.

Mr Harinarayan added that health and motor segments formed a major chunk of insurance industry.

He said compared to last year (23 per cent), the health insurance sector grew by 33 per cent during the first six months of this year.

Referring to the feasibility of an individual holding a long term health policy, he said there were some fundamental problems in offering long term health protection.

“It is difficult for the insurance company. They may be under—pricing it or over pricing it. They are not long term health policy” he said