Shortage of staff and medicine hits health services in Fazilka: The Tribune India

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Praful Chander Nagpal

Fazilka, August 5

A large number of vacancies for chief medical officer (SMO), medical specialist, program manager and a shortage of medicines have hit the health services in Fazilka.

Information collected by The Tribune revealed that out of a total of nine chief medical officer posts, seven remained vacant. District Hospital, Fazilka; The 100-bed hospital in Abohar and Civil Hospital in Jalalabad do not have regular SMOs.

7 SMO vacancies in Fazilka

Of the nine Senior Medical Officer (SMO) positions, seven remained vacant

Out of seven program officer positions, four have been vacant for a long time

In addition, out of seven program officer positions, four have been vacant for a long time.

The sources said that the positions of District Immunization Officer, Assistant Medical Commissioner (who handles district administrative affairs), District Epidemiologist and District Dental Officer are yet to be filled. Three emergency doctor positions are also vacant.

Fazilka Civil Hospital was transformed into a 100-bed hospital after moving to the new building about six months ago. Not to mention filling vacancies, the Health Department has not even sanctioned new vacancies as per the requirement of a 100 bed hospital so far. The continued shortage of drugs at the local hospital forced patients to purchase expensive drugs from private stores. “AAP had promised to provide all the drugs in public hospitals, but they did not keep their word,” said patient Sumitra Devi, who received only three drugs out of the six prescribed.

Sources said that out of the list of 225 essential medicines, 100 to 120 medicines are available at the local hospital. It is reported that even basic items such as disposable syringes and IV sets are in short supply in some areas.

SMO officer Dr Vikas Gandhi said emergency drugs are available at the hospital. He said they have requested more positions for the district hospital from higher authorities.

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