6 years on, Chanapora PHC’s upgradation stuck in red tape

Round the clock facilities being provided: Director Health
6 years on, Chanapora PHC’s upgradation stuck in red tape
Representational Image File/ GK

Srinagar, Jun 10: Located in the heart of the City and with the capacity to cater to lakhs of people in the catchment area, Primary Health Centre (PHC) at Chanapora has remained at the basic level of functioning despite massive infrastructure upgrade eight years ago.

Proposal for upgrading PHC Chanapora to the level of Sub-District Hospital was submitted by Directorate of Health Services Kashmir in August 2016. The proposal was preceded and flanked by a massive infrastructure development at the site, replacing the existing structure with a 50 bedded hospital, starting in 2013. The G+3 building was later augmented by another building, the total project cost above Rs 20 crore. Machinery and equipment was procured and an operation theatre was also created, a senior health official told Greater Kashmir. However, no staff was allocated for the fresh infrastructure and for the past six years, the hospital has continued to function as a PHC only.

The residents of Chanapora area and its vicinities have decried the apathy of the Government towards improving the healthcare delivery in the area. While lodging their protest against the failure to upgrade the PHC Chanapora despite sanction on papers, a delegation told Greater Kashmir that the hospital has just two doctors. “If one visits the hospital after 4 pm, it is deserted as no patients are being admitted there and no doctors are available,” Abdul Hameed, a member of the delegation said.

A resident of the area said that the hospital does not even have a surgeon or any other specialist. “For the past two years, the Government used the hospital as a COVID19 facility for district Budgam. They even told us that the hospital would be upgraded once the pandemic is over and all the facilities and services that are expected to function at the SDH level would be made available for the residents. “These include gynaecology, surgery, pediatrics and physician,” he said adding that these were pressing needs of the population in the area and for people in Budgam district as well. “Yet, nothing seems to be happening in this direction,” he said.

Many members of the delegation expressed their concerns that the hospital was not being upgraded because there was a private hospital in the area and a functioning government healthcare facility would affect the business of this hospital. “Government needs to dispel our doubts and make sure that people have access to basic healthcare at this hospital,” he said.

Director Health Services Kashmir, Dr Mushtaq Ahmed Rather said the hospital has adequate manpower to cater to the healthcare needs round the clock. “Given the huge rush, this hospital is a priority area,” he said. Asked about the details of the manpower that ran the hospital 24 x 7, he said, there are five medical officers at the hospital; four dental surgeons, one pharmacist, one dental technician, one lab technician, one sweeper and one nursing orderly at the hospital, in addition to two nurses. He said general OPD functioned on every day, while other OPDs were roaster wise. USG was carried out twice a week.

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