Health department seals 6 clinics in Baramulla, 1 in Anantnag, CMOs, BMOs directed to inspect drug stores, medical shops operating in their respective areas

Health department on Tuesday issued orders to its functionaries to increase vigilance on illegal practice and quackery following which seven establishments were sealed across Kashmir.

After a person was found impersonating as a doctor in Pattan town of Kashmir earlier this month, a Pandora’s Box seems to have opened as new cases of malpractice and quackery are being reported every day from various parts of Valley, a source said. 

Against this backdrop, the directorate of health services on Tuesday issued order to Chief Medical Officers (CMOs) and Block Medical Officers (BMOs) of all districts of Kashmir. 

The order titled “operation of illegal clinics and practicing/prescribing of drugs by quacks/fake doctors” directs all the CMOs and the BMOs to inspect drug stores, medical shops and clinics operating in their respective areas of jurisdiction and verify their credentials.

“Any person found involved in operating illegal clinic and practicing, prescribing drugs, medicines without being qualified, same shall be sealed forthwith and an FIR lodged against the person”, reads the order.

The CMOs and the BMOs have also been assigned to responsibility of ensuring that no illegal clinic, drug store is operating in their area and that no person prescribes drugs or practices without having qualification for the same.

A report has also been sought by the directorate within a week from the order date.

Meanwhile, six establishments were sealed today itself in Baramulla. CMO Baramulla, Dr Bashir Chalkoo said that upon inspection, some teachers and other employees were seen posing as “doctors” and prescribing drugs to patients. “We have registered the cases and sealed these establishments,” he said.

In Anantnag also, one clinic was sealed in Khanabal area in this regard. CMO Anantnag, Dr Fazil Kocchar said that the credentials of the clinic operator were found to be doubtful. “We are verifying the details but for now, we have sealed the establishment,” he said.

The society of dental surgeons of Kashmir, meanwhile, has welcomed the decision of authorities to increase vigil on illegal practice. 

It has directed dental surgeons to register themselves and their clinics with the competent authority and help stop the menace of quackery in dental practice. 

Dr Romesh Singh, president of the association said, “Dental quackery is a menace that has far reaching ramifications. We are with government at every step to stop it.”