Venezuela cracks down on private hospitals

April 23, 2007 01:39

President Hugo Chavez said Sunday that he will enact a law to regulate prices at private hospitals and warned that his government would seize any hospital caught flouting the new controls. Chavez said he will approve the law by presidential decree, using special powers granted to him by the National Assembly nearly three months ago, as he aims to steer the South American country toward socialism. "We're going to have strict regulation. Any clinic that doesn't comply, let it be closed down," Chavez said. "We could take it for Inside the Barrio (a state health program), convert it into a popular clinic. No problem."

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