STATE TIMES NEWS SRINAGAR: The State Administrative Council (SAC) which met on Saturday under the chairmanship of Governor, Satya Pal Malik approved the ‘Policy Document’ for setting up of two Medi-Cities in Jammu & Kashmir along with identification/ transfer of land by the Revenue Department for the purpose. J&K Government has been laying emphasis on provision of quality healthcare facilities to the people and expanding the coverage of public health institutional network.
41 new medical stores being opened SRINAGAR: The SAC on Saturday reviewed the progress of implementation of the Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojna Kendra (PMBJPK) and Affordable Medicines and Reliable Implants for Treatment (AMRIT) initiative in J&K. Pertinent to mention that the Department of Pharmaceuticals, Government of India launched a campaign ‘Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojna Kendra (PMBJPK)’, with the objective of providing quality medicines at affordable and lesser prices to the general masses. These medicines have the same quality and efficacy as expensive branded drugs. The campaign was undertaken through outlets namely ‘Jan Aushadhi Medical Stores’ opened in various districts. In J&K, the scheme was launched in 2010 and the first store was opened at Red Cross Building, Exchange Road Srinagar in 2011 by the then Governor, J&K. As on date, 57 stores have been opened in the State, out of which 45 stores are being run successfully by private entrepreneurs. Opening of additional 25 stores is in pipeline. The Government has also notified the guidelines for opening up/establishment of Jan Aushadi Stores to give further impetus to the scheme. The Bureau of Pharma Public Sector Undertaking of India (BPPI) provides one time financial assistance upto Rs 2.50 lakh for establishment of such Jan Aushadhi Medical Stores. Out of the Rs 2.50 lakh, Rs 1 lakh is provided by way of free medicine in the beginning, Rs 50,000 lakh as reimbursements for computer, printer-scanner, internet etc and Rs 1 lakh for reimbursement for furniture and fixtures. Similarly, to provide affordable medicines and implants for treatment of Cancer, Cardio Vascular and other diseases, the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India launched a novel initiative -AMRIT. HLL Life Care Ltd. has been selected as the Nodal Agency by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Govt. of India for setting up of AMRIT Pharmacies in the country. AMRIT Retail Pharmacy Network offers more than 5,200 drugs, implants, surgical disposables and other consumables at an average discount upto 60 per cent of MRP through 136 outlets across 22 states. Sites for 16 AMRIT Retail Pharmacy Stores have been identified at GMC Jammu, SMGS Hospital, Super Specialty Hospital Jammu, Govt. Dental College Jammu, GMC Rajouri, GMC Doda & GMC Kathua in Jammu Division and SMHS Hospital Srinagar, L.D Hospital, Bone & Joint Hospital, SKIMS (near OPD & Emergency Block), Super Specialty Hospital, GMC Baramulla & GMC Anantnag in Kashmir Division. The MoU has been signed between the intending health institutions of Jammu/ Kashmir province and HLL Life Care Limited, New Delhi for the purpose. These stores will provide generic and life saving branded drugs under one roof. Rates offered for all types of drugs and surgical disposables will be highly economical with savings of upto 60 per cent to the patients. These stores will thus serve as a boon for the poor people.
There are around 3500 public health institutions spread across Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh regions. Government has been making considerable investment in the creation of health infrastructure and improvement of the quality of public health services. Concerted efforts are also being made to develop the private healthcare sector in J&K to attain universal health coverage goals.
With a view to promoting healthcare infrastructure in J&K, Government in the month of March, 2019 approved the ‘State Health Care Investment Policy-2019’. The Policy offers various incentives to the private investors and entrepreneurs to set up health care facilities that aim at improving accessibility of people to quality health services including promotion and establishment of hospitals and medical and allied educational institutions. The Policy also envisages declaration of well defined geographical areas having potential and being conducive for development as Medi-City to promote medical tourism in J&K.
The Policy Document underlines detailed procedure for setting up of the Medi-Cities including the scope and facilities under Medi-Cities, responsibilities of investors/promoters and various operational modalities. The Government of Jammu and Kashmir shall invite private partners to set up Medi- Cities in Jammu and Kashmir divisions. The Government will notify identified geographies in the Jammu and Kashmir divisions for setting up of the Medi-Cities. The private investor would be required to design, finance, construct, equip the Medi-City with necessary medical and non-medical infrastructure and run and maintain the facility. The Government of J&K will support in providing land, financial aid and assistance subject to the State Health Care Investment Policy-2019. The Government will also facilitate fast clearance of project proposals through a web based single window system allowing investors to avail the necessary approvals to establish and start their business operations through a single platform without any physical touch point with the approving/licensing authorities. An Apex Level Project Clearance Committee (ALPCC) will be set up by the Health & Medical Education Department for speedy clearance of the project proposals.
The Health and Medical Education Department will be the Nodal department for implementation of the Medi-Cities project.
The facilities expected in the Medi-Cities include Medical Colleges & Hospitals, Super Specialty Centres of Excellence, Nursing, Pharmaceuticals, Hospital Management and Dental Colleges, Ayurvedic Colleges and Hospitals and Medical Education Hubs, AYUSH Centers, Research Centers with residential areas, staff quarters and guest houses etc.
With the establishment of Medi-Cities, the health care delivery system, in Jammu and Kashmir is expected to receive a major boost.
The SAC also accorded sanction to the enhancement of posts under Training Reserve from existing 6 per cent to 20 per cent and Deputation Reserve from existing 4 per cent to 20 per cent of the Duty Posts in respect of Medical Officers in the Jammu and Kashmir Health & Family Welfare (Gazetted Service).
It is noteworthy to mention that the Health and Medical Education Department is one of the essential services department and the Medical Officers are the cutting edge level functionaries constituting the backbone of the department.
The sanctioned strength of the posts of Medical Officers is 3,781 comprising 3,151 duty posts and 630 reserve posts.
With the increase in the reserve posts, the sanctioned strength of the post of Medical Officers will raise to 4,726 posts. Consequently, more than 800 posts of Medical Officers shall accrue for reference to J&K PSC for recruitment. The recruitment against these posts will help the department to man the health institutions situated in peripheral and far-flung areas.
The recruitment of Medical Officers will also help to provide manpower in the sister organizations where the Medical officers required to be posted on deputation from the Health & Medical Education Department. This will also provide opportunities to the Medical Officers to acquire such skills/training which would help them to further their career and in the process augment the health care system across J&K. This will also help in the smooth functioning of the newly established Government Medical Colleges.
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