Owners of wellness centres are nervous about the implementation of the Clinical Establishment Act, unaware of what its stringent regulations will imply for them.
According to the CE Act, even wellness and fitness centres, which provide services such as weight loss programmes, will come under the ambit of the Act. However, it is not clear whether they too will have to stabilise patients in critical condition, because the rules and regulations are yet to be finalised.
"We have an in-house doctor, usually an Ayurveda or naturopathy practitioner, who can provide basic first aid to a patient in case of an emergency. If there is any specific requirement under the CE Act, we can train our staff according to the provisions," said Sunil Rao, director (marketing), The Four Fountain Spas.
Spa owners welcomed the move to introduce quality control and registration formalities for wellness centres, but expressed reservations about the stabilization clause.
"We are not aware of the CE Act. In case the government wants us to attend to emergency patients, we will require their support to establish the necessary infrastructure. At present, we have a doctor available on-call. We can provide basic first aid, but not medical treatment," said Kiran Bawa, managing director, Iosis Spa and Wellness Center.
State health minister Suresh Shetty stressed the importance of covering establishments such as ayurvedic massage centres and weight-loss clinics under the Act.
"Anyone who dispenses drugs and medicines, or claims to treat diseases such as arthritis, should be registered with us. We need to know what their qualifications are, and how many such centres are functioning in the state," he said.