Maha to enact legislation for regulation of govt, private pathology labs with stringent provisions

Mumbai:  Maharashtra Minister Uday Samant on Tuesday announced in the Assembly that the state government will soon enact a legislation for the regulation of government and private pathology laboratories with a provision for imprisonment.

He said the Maharashtra government has received a draft Bill and rules and regulations for its consent and if the Bill is not tabled during the ongoing session then the government is open to amend the Bombay Nursing Home Act to bring the pathology laboratories within its ambit.

Samant was responding to questions raised by Sunil Rane, Ajay Chaudhary, Ashish Shelar and Rajesh Tope.

The minister further announced that sample collection centres, which have mushroomed across Maharashtra, will also be covered under the proposed legislation.

The minister said that flying squads would soon be appointed to check operations of pathology labs in Maharashtra and if they are operating without due certificate, then their registration would be cancelled.

“It is mandatory for the pathology laboratories to obtain a certificate from the Maharashtra Paramedical Council. During 2019 and 2024, 7,185 applicants have been given certificates to start pathology laboratories, of which 187 are in Mumbai.

“There are 197 laboratories attached to the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation hospitals and for that, the civic body is answerable for their operations but not other laboratories. There is a need to check the operations of pathology laboratories and curb irregularities.

“The proposed legislation will have stringent provisions including criminal action against the violators under the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita,” said Samant.

According to the Maharashtra Association of Practicing Pathologists and Microbiologists data, the state has an estimated 13,000 laboratories with 8,000 lacking a qualified pathologist.

Nearly 80 per cent of such laboratories are in urban areas.

According to the proposed legislation, the registration period of the laboratory will be valid for three years and the said registration should be done online in a transparent manner.

Medical Health Officers in municipal areas, District Surgeons in other urban areas and District Health officers in rural areas will be the appropriate authority for such registration.

Every laboratory should be inspected twice a year by the appropriate authority. As per the proposed legislation, in the event of misconduct or errors found during inspection the registration of the laboratory should be suspended until misconduct or errors are rectified.

Further, there is a provision whereby registration should be cancelled if error is found three times in a row.

If it is observed that the laboratory is running during the suspended period then imprisonment for a minimum of five years and Rs 1 lakh penalty should be a provision.

(Sanjay Jog can be contacted at


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