Hospitals may hike service charge as consent fee goes up

March 30, 2022 09:24 pm | Updated 09:25 pm IST - Bengaluru

Hospital visits could get more expensive as medical establishments have said that the hike in consent fee that they have to pay will be passed on to the end consumer — in this case, the patients.

Under the Karnataka State Board for the Prevention and Control of Water Pollution (Procedure for Transaction of Business) and the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) (Amendment) Rules, 2021, the per annum consent fee based on capital investment for healthcare facilities that come under the red category has been hiked in the range of 33% to 900%, the Private Hospitals and Nursing Homes’ Association (PHANA) has said. This would be applicable for hospitals whose capital investment is between ₹50 crore and ₹1,000 crore.

Explaining how this will impact hospitals, PHANA president Prasanna H.M. told The Hindu, “For a small hospital with 80 beds, for instance, the hike is 300%. This has been raised without scientific calculation, and we are being charged a percentage of our investments. It’s going to damage the healthcare industry. From ₹1.5 lakh for five years, it will go up to ₹6 lakh.”

Hospitals argue that they have already invested in facilities that include STPs and ETPs. “We also pay ₹58 per kg for biomedical waste, in addition to STP and ETP charges. Over and above this, we are paying more now. With any expenditure, the end customer will be burdened. Service charges in hospitals will go up,” he added.

The association recently met Minister for Environment, Ecology and Tourism Anand Singh urging for government intervention in reducing the hike in consent fee paid towards the prevention and control of water pollution for all infrastructure projects coming under healthcare facilities (hospitals and nursing homes). Terming the hike ‘harsh’, PHANA had argued that the sector is service-oriented and cannot be equated with product-oriented industries.

Requesting that the healthcare sector be considered as a special category, PHANA has also urged the government to reduce the consent fee, while demanding implementation in a phased manner and maintaining the period of renewal to once in five years.

KSPCB officials were unavailable for comment.

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.