Similarly many ASHA workers were found without drug kits and moreover as per audit out of 1,887 ASHAs engaged in three districts of Doda, Rajouri and Udhampur, 1,123 ASHAs (60 per cent) were below 10th standard against the norms. List of essential drugs approved as per the Public Health Standards for CHC contain 172 medicines/ drugs (136 items under various categories of “General List”, 20 items under “Miscellaneous List” and 16 items under “Essential Obstetric Care Drug List”). Audit found that 135 items of medicines/ drugs (78 per cent) in CHC Gandoh, 62 items (36 per cent) in CHC Bhadarwah and 146 items (85 per cent) in CHC Nowshera were not available. Women in the reproductive age require a weekly dose of iron folic acid tablets for prevention of iron deficiency anemia and for that despite supply order issued by DHS Jammu in November 2013 ,neither any supply was received from the supplier nor was any alternative procurement made from any other agency. Thereafter, the DHS Jammu transferred Rs1.97 crore in January 2015 to 10 CMOs of Jammu region and Rs 1.99 crore in November 2015 to J&K Medical Supplies Corporation Ltd, however, the supply was also not received from the Corporation till completion of audit with the result only 5 per cent to 36 percent of pregnant women received iron -folic acid tablets during the same period. Further audit of records showed that Rs 37.15 lakh was irregularly diverted in four units of DHs: Rajouri and Udhampur; CHCs: Nowshera and Kandi from Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakram to Hospital Development Fund of these institutions and incurred on wages of security and purchase of stationery items where as these funds are to assure free services to all pregnant women and sick neonates accessing public health institutions.
There is no effort to strengthen periphery health services so much so that new born babies are referred from District Hospitals to GMC and at already overburdened Children Hospital mothers of infants struggling for their lives are made to rest, sleep in the corridor itself, some even with caesarian operation as there is no waiting room for them. Rats, flies, mosquitoes are prevalent everywhere despite government charging gate pass fee from every visitor every time. It seems authorities managing healthcare do not understand the importance of two AIIMS allocated to our state or otherwise there is no valid excuse why the work has not been started on the projects till now. With OPD services of AIIMS at Andhara, Rae Baraeily and Nagpur already started without proper Medical College who is stopping similar arrangement from GMC or Super Speciality Building or Maternity Hospital Gandhi Nagar , where there is a will there is a way. Government has been just interested in making announcements for new Medical Colleges, Medical Universities, Cancer Institute, Bone and Joints Hospital as very little has changed on ground in reality. Medical Colleges announced way back have got Principle’s now who are being pressurized to get the things done in shortest span as elections are approaching but their task is next to impossible. Number of top vacancies including Director Health Services Jammu , Director Schemes Jammu, Deputy Director Hqrs, State Tuberculosis Officer, State Malariologist, Divisional Nutrition Officer are vacant which shows seriousness of authorities. Lots of centrally sponsored schemes have not been implemented in J &K National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS), which is meant for the underprivileged sections of society, the centrally sponsored national dialysis programme (NDP) that promises provision of free dialysis for kidney disease patients at district level is yet to take off in J&K, with health authorities citing shortage of trained manpower as the reason for delay.
Three Health Ministers in three years show how much serious government is. Interesting part of this whole sordid affairs is that present Commissioner Secretary has occupied this post earlier also as such no excuse for non implementation of schemes or procurement of ambulances or medicines or irrelevant transfers or shortage of doctors. Despite this precarious picture, on Governor’s order of repatriation all attached or serving employees to their respective districts, so called show runner syndicate in DHS Jammu has found a unique way-out of this, a recommendation letter that DHS Jammu cannot be run without these employees. There are no criteria or policy for transfers as orders get modified with same persons getting transferred to earlier place. Conclusion of all this mess can be either non serious approach with no accountability or no political will to provide relief and in both cases ultimate loss is of public. With Modi government raising the 2018-19 health budget by 5 per cent to Rs 52,800 crores , it was a golden opportunity for our State to build a model health care infrastructure for generations to come but it has even failed to take off as depicted by present situation.
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