Over 3,500 Posts Vacant In State’s ‘Ailing’ Health Department

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Saima Bhat

Srinagar

More than 3,500 posts are lying vacant in the state’s health department, the government said Thursday. The state’s health ministry has undertaken 13 projects under NRHM to supplement the requirement of health sector in the state.

The government claimed that efforts are being made to fill up all the vacant posts and 835 doctors and 3762 paramedics have been engaged under NRHM to improve the availability of manpower in these health institutions. The vacant 3580 posts in different cadres of health department have been referred to various recruiting agencies minister for medical and technical education R S Chib informed the legislative assembly on Thursday.

Despite various efforts taken by the government, there is a dearth of medical facilities in various districts of J&K. The condition of various health centers, their upgradation and the facilities provided was revealed in various starred and non-starred question asked in the legislative assembly on Friday.

The health ministry said it was not only concerned to upgrade the Allopathy health facilities but also the Ayurvedic health institutions. There are 417 ISM’s in J&K with total staff strength of 1129, with around 43 of them functional in Jammu district alone.

It was revealed that the community health centre in Chadoora was the most overcrowded health centers in the state. However the health centre has been upgraded to SHD. Primary Health Centre (PHC), Marh, was upgraded to the level of CHC during 2002. Various posts were kept abeyance as the said order was issued without the Cabinet approval. Against 20 posts of doctors and para medics, 17 are in position but they have been provided by internal arrangements. The upgradation of the PHC is under NRHM.

In Ramban district, which is a constituency of 71 Panchayat members, only three PHC’s are functioning presently and there are only five ambulances available to meet any eventuality. Moreover, the department is in the process of procuring 25 critical care ambulances under NRHM for which Rs 5 crore have been approved. Furthermore, the procurement of 11 medical mobile aid units under NRHM is under consideration of the health department.

In Suchetgarh constituency, against 105 posts of doctors and para medicals, 76 are in position and rest remains vacant. While answering a question asked by lawmaker Nizamudin, 13 medical and paramedical staff posts lie vacant in Bandipora district, while 30 assistant surgeon posts remain unfulfilled in Doda district.

From last two years, 1065.34 lakh funds were allocated to Doda district out of which 860.10 lakh were released and 829.66 lakhs are shown as the expenditure amount. Document released by the health department show that a house committee has been constituted by the J&K legislature under the chairmanship of Dr Mustafa Kamal, MLA Hazratbal to look into the process of creation/upgradation and strengthening of various health institutions in the state from 1-04-2002 to 31-03-2011. The committee has given its report with recommendations. The government said the concerned department is working on those recommendations.

Moreover, the H&ME department has requested the directorate of remote sensing for undertaking a mapping survey to identify the places where there is need to set up health institutions keeping in view the norms for setting up such institutions and also the accessibility and terrain of the area. Various schemes of health in state are running under NRHM and Janani Shishu Suraksha Karayakaram (JSSK).

The state government said it was also looking into the issues which can improve the status of medicines in the state. To curb the menace of illegal drugs for which special Nakas are laid at Lakhanpur Toll Post by the inspectorate staff comprising of the state drugs control officers and representatives from the central drugs standards control organization (CDSCO) from where the consignments containing medicinal preparations samples being imported in to the state are checked at regular intervals. The central drugs standards control organization has already established its sub zonal office at Jammu.

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