The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) has asked private healthcare providers to reduce their service fees and charges by 10-60%, reports said on Thursday.

A medical source said the ministry would link the renewal of a private health facility's licence to abiding by the decision. Accordingly, the licence would not be renewed if the healthcare provider does not reduce its charges, Arabic daily Arrayah reported.

The source said that a number of private healthcare providers would meet next week at Qatar Chamber to discuss the ministry's directives.

Arrayah published a report more than a month ago on the views of the public about the charges at private hospitals and clinics. Many people had complained about exorbitant rates the healthcare providers were charging for even urgent services.

In particular, Qataris demanded a ceiling on the charges for each service while exercising tighter control on the process by the authorities concerned to save the public from any potential exploitation.

Further, they told the daily that some private health facilities ask for unnecessary checkups and tests just to maximise their profits. This should be subject to closer supervision by the department concerned, Arrayah added.

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