AAP: govt. ignoring drug crisis

Published - October 20, 2018 11:49 pm IST - Mumbai

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Saturday said government hospitals in the State are facing a shortage of medicines, and that the party would visit hospitals and stage protests on the issue from November 1.

Former MP and AAP convener Brigadier Sudhir Sawant, AAP State leader and healthcare activist Dr. Abhijit More, and former IAS officer Dr. Kishore Mandhyan made the statement at a press conference in Mumbai on Saturday.

“[The shortage of medicines] has turned into a full-blown crisis and the State government seems to blatantly ignore it,” Dr. More said, blaming the steps taken by the government after the medicine procurement scam of 2016 for the crisis. “The government violated its own policy and decided to procure medicines via Haffkine Biopharma. Where one needs a staff of 150-200 for such a process, they only have 30-35 people, and that too on deputation,” Dr. More said.

Brigadier Sawant accused the government of neglecting hospitals and the education system, and that “incompetent ministers should be thrown out”. “Arvind Kejriwal has been known to make surprise visits and checks at hospitals and schools in Delhi. Every single medicine is available in government hospitals across Delhi. If that can happen in Delhi, why does the Maharashtra government act in such a callous way?” he asked.

Dr. Mandhyan said that even the previous government was responsible for the crisis. “Diseases are same in Delhi, yet the demand for medicines is met. But in Maharashtra, the government is failing to provide basic necessities to the people of their State. The Delhi government spends 12% of its budget on healthcare, whereas Maharashtra only spends a minimal 3% which is ridiculous,” Dr. Mandhyan said.

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