Vital health programme a ‘damp squib’ in JK
NPCDCS suffers for want of facilities, publicity
Srinagar, June 8: A much-hyped programme meant to provide free treatment to patients suffering from critical ailments is proving to be a damp squib in Jammu and Kashmir in the wake of little publicity given to it.
The National Programme for Prevention & Control of Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke (NPCDCS), launched by Union Health Ministry few years ago to provide free treatment to patients suffering from these diseases in rural areas, has failed to take-off properly ever since. This, according to sources, is because the programme has not been given proper publicity and the facilities required for its implementation are dismally poor in health centres falling under its ambit.
In J&K, three districts Kupwara, Doda and Kargil fall under the ambit of the programme. But due to lack of publicity and awareness, people say they are not aware about it.
“Nobody ever told us about this programme. It was the responsibility of the state government to create awareness about it so that people are benefited,” said Ghulam Hassan, a social activist working in Kupwara.
While little publicity has hit the programme badly, medicos say it is imperative to put in place the allied facilities in the hospitals to make the scheme successful.
“While the Government of India has come up with the scheme, it is the responsibility of the state government to properly publicize it and also ensure that the facilities required for its implementation are put in the health centres in these districts,” said a medico, insisting not to be named. “There are a number of hospitals in these districts which lack facilities to treat these diseases properly. That would obviously mar the essence of the scheme.”
Under the programme, the Centre and the State Government are supposed to share expenses of 80: 20 ratio respectively.
According to medicos, the “major thrust” of the programme is on cancer treatment in view of high expenses required for the same. But, they say, the health centres are facing shortage of medicos to get the scheme implemented. “To provide money is not sufficient for making the NPCDCS successful. It requires adequate publicity, facilities and manpower which is sadly a grave problem in JK,” the medico said.
As part of the NPCDCS, clinics and wards had to be set up for non-communicable disease (NCD) and geriatrics. The district cancer care centre had to be an important part of the project which would provide free chemotherapy treatment and other medical care to the cancer patients “free of cost”.
Under the programme, CD clinics had to be set up in 16 community health centres in a district and these clinics would refer patients, who need better care and treatment, to the concerned General Hospital, in the district. A Casualty wing with six beds and an in-patient unit with 30 beds had to be a part of the General Hospital. But, a lot among all this is not available on ground.
When contacted the in-charge of NPCDCS, Dr Rubeena told Greater Kashmir that the programme was started from December 2011. “We are implementing the programme in Kupwara, Doda and Kargil districts. We have advertised posts of Oncologist for the implementation of this programme and have also recruited nurses who are presently undergoing training at SKIMS,” she said, adding, “The programme is moving in right direction. But it would take some time to fully publicize it.”
Lastupdate on : Fri, 8 Jun 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 8 Jun 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 9 Jun 2012 00:00:00 IST
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