Staff Correspondent

Many posts of medical and paramedical staff vacant

Official says

Life-saving drugs will be supplied regularly

Doctors prefer to work in urban areas

DAVANGERE: Many primary health centres (PHCs) and primary health units (PHUs) in Davangere district seem to be existent only on paper as sanctioned posts of medical and paramedical staff are yet to be filled. People hardly have access to medical facilities owing to severe shortage of staff.

Doctor’s absence

There has been no doctor for the last six months in the PHC at Kariganur, the village of Chennagiri MLA Mahima Patel, who is now Special Representative of the State in New Delhi.

Owing to the absence of doctors and paramedical staff, the people of a number of villages have to go to taluk hospitals or district hospitals to avail themselves of medical care.

Further, a considerable number of medicines, including expensive life-saving drugs, were being supplied to all PHCs and PHUs irrespective of whether doctors were present to administer them or not.

Posts vacant

District Health Officer S.M. Bankar said many posts of doctors, laboratory technicians, pharmacists, health workers, and X-ray technicians had not yet been filled. He said that he had written to the Government to take up recruitment.

He expressed his inability to have doctors and staff recruited on contract basis due to the lack of response to the advertisements.

He said that many doctors preferred to work only in urban areas.

He said that over 15 posts of doctors, 85 posts of health workers, 21 posts of laboratory technicians and five posts of pharmacists were vacant in the district. He also said that he had directed doctors of some PHCs to visit a few other PHCs once or twice a week. However, he was evasive when asked how doctors were functioning bereft of staff.

He also said that sufficient life-saving drugs and other common medicines had been supplied regularly.

He said that he had ensured the presence of sufficient stock of medicines such as IV fluids, anti-snake venom, PALM drug (which is used to treat people who consume poison).

Money demanded

He said he had warned doctors not to demand money from the patients. He had received similar complaints against a doctor of a village in Harpanahalli taluk and warned him of dire consequences, he said.

To a question, he said three of the 56 blood samples sent to the National Institute of Virology from the district had been diagnosed with dengue, while three cases turned out to be chikungunya.