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asked the Minister of Health if he is aware that necessary medicines beyond a certain price cannot be prescribed for serious illnesses, e.g., gastric enteritis, under the health insurance scheme, and that as a result of this some panel doctors are informing their panel patients that they cannot prescribe adequate remedies, but that if they become private patients suitable medicines could be prescribed; what is the limit of price allowed; and, if such patients have been wrongly advised, will he take steps to prevent its recurrence?
I am not aware that the facts in regard to prescribing by panel doctors are as stated in the question. Insurance practitioners are required to order such drugs and appliances as are necessary, without limit of price, subject to certain necessary precautions against needlessly expensive prescribing. I should take severe disciplinary action in any case of proved failure to carry out this duty.