Mumbai

A shot in the arm: civic health allocation up by 15%

Focus on equipment, infrastructure and facilities

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has increased the health budget for 2019-2020 by 15% with a special focus on better equipment, infrastructure, and facility management services. From ₹3,601.86 crore in 2018-19, the budget announced on Monday was raised to ₹4,151.14 crore.

Highlights include starting diagnostic facilities in peripheral hospitals and dispensaries to reduce the burden on tertiary-care civic hospitals under ‘Aapli Chikitsa’. The project will bring in private diagnostic facilities to offer services to patients in the public sector.

Additional Municipal Commissioner Idzes Kundan said, “Just in terms of laboratory investigations, there are on an average 1,000 referrals from 28 maternity hospitals, 17,000 referrals from peripheral hospitals and 10 to 15 from dispensaries. The load of these referrals will drastically reduce once Aapli Chikitsa starts.” The diagnostic centres have been finalised through a bidding process and the project will be started soon, said Ms. Kundan.

Major redevelopment work for three peripheral hospitals, M.T. Agarwal in Mulund, Shatabdi in Govandi and Bhagwati in Borivali, is expected to start from February 2019. While the expenditure on these hospitals for the current year is estimated to be ₹26.88 crore, the proposed budget is ₹115 crore for 2019-20.

She said, “The city will get 732 new beds in these three hospitals. This will again help in reducing the load in the major BMC hospitals.”

Plans are also on to make all the 171 Intensive Care Unit beds in peripheral hospitals fully operational by getting full-time intensivists. At present, 148 beds are fully operational. For the major BMC hospitals, a capital budget of ₹230 crore has been proposed for acquiring state-of-the-art modular operation theatres for KEM, Sion and Nair hospitals, 1.5 Tesla MRI machines for KEM and Nair Hospital, and replacement of CT scan machines in all three major hospitals.

The Acworth Leprosy Hospital has been allocated ₹155 crore for building of a birth and death registration record room and a resident medical officers’ quarters.

The health budget has also made allocations for outsourcing of housekeeping services to maintain hygiene and an agency for immediate repairs. An agency has also been finalised for the maintenance and upkeep of over 4,800 machines and equipment in civic hospitals.

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Printable version | May 25, 2020 8:15:30 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/a-shot-in-the-arm-civic-health-allocation-up-by-15/article26178751.ece

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