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Inadequate residential facilities for medical staff in rural areas
3/21/2018 10:52:54 PM
Arun Singh

Early Times Report
Jammu, Mar 21: Despite the fact that providing adequate accommodation facilities along with other amenities to the doctors and other medical staff posted in rural areas is very important for their retention in these health institutions, Health Department seems non-serious in this regard as there is still acute shortage of residential quarters at various places. Sources told Early Times that the shortage of residential quarters for medical staff is one of the root causes for non -retention of doctors, other medical staff in rural areas which causes huge problems for their stay in remote areas, hampering smooth functioning of these institutions.
"As per Indian Public Health Standards (IPHS), suitable accommodation with all amenities should be available for medical officer, nursing staff, pharmacist, laboratory technician and other staff in a Primary Health Center (PHC)," they said further adding that a minimum of eight quarters for doctors, eight quarters for staff nurses/paramedical staff, two quarters for ward boys and one quarter for driver should be provided in the Community Health Center.
Astonishingly, as against these norms, the shortage of staff quarters was to the extent of 90 per cent in many District Hospitals (DHs), six Community Hospital Center (CHCs), and over dozen Primary Health Centers (PHCs), in Jammu region, they said.
They further informed that at many districts some Community Hospital Center (CHCs), and Primary Health Centers (PHCs) are without staff quarters and the Health Department has attributed shortage of accommodation facility to shortage of funds and land.
Although the primary responsibility of Health Department is to ensure availability of health professionals in public health facilities and under the National Health Mission (NHM), financial and technical support is provided to States to strengthen their healthcare systems including support for engagement of health professionals, they informed further adding that financial support is also provided to States by giving hard area allowance to staff serving in rural and remote areas and also for their residential quarters so that they are encouraged to serve in such areas.
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