The story appears on

Page A5

August 7, 2009

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro » Health and Science

Ban on agencies selling hospital appointments

SOME local hospitals have stopped using agencies that charge patients for outpatient appointments, after the Ministry of Health proposed to ban hospitals using such agencies and make them operate their own free appointment system.

Currently, people have to queue often for hours to make an appointment to get medical care or buy an appointment from an agency.

The proposal - posted on the ministry's Website for comment on Wednesday night - says all the Chinese mainland's top state-owned hospitals should start their own outpatient appointment service from October and gradually broaden the service for specialists, as part of the nationwide health care reform.

The patient's identity will be needed for appointments to stop people scalping their appointment.

Song Guofan, an official from the Shanghai Health Bureau, said some local hospitals have already started their own appointment service, "but it may take a long time to fully promote the service," he said.

Sun also said some patients fail to show up after making an appointment.

"There should be quotas for patients with appointments and for those without appointments," he said.

Local big hospitals such as Ruijin and Huashan have started to cease using appointment agencies.

Yuan Kejian, vice president of Ruijin Hospital, said it had stopped using, a major agency, and will stop using other agencies soon.

Yuan said the hospital has set up a real identity appointment system with a hotline, Website and outpatient service center.

"We have a 30 percent quota for specialist appointments and will give more quotas in the future," he said. "Patients from other provinces will also be able to make appointments soon."

Officials from said it will change its service from offering appointments to giving people comprehensive health information.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend