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Ganderbal’s health centres ailing

Face staff shortage, lack infrastructure

Post by Umar Raina on Friday, December 9, 2022

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Ganderbal, Dec 8: The hospitals in central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district are facing a shortage of staff, including doctors, and lack the infrastructure due to which the referrals to the hospitals in Srinagar have increased. 
Take the case of the Primary Health Centre (PHC) Hariganiwan. An official wishing anonymity said the PHC lacks many basic facilities. “There is a shortage of doctors in this health centre which caters to the needs of around a thousand people,” he said.
Several patients and attendants told Rising Kashmir that “the staff strength of the PHC is the same as it was years ago”. “The authorities keep saying that the PHC has been upgraded but the reality is that there is a shortage of doctors, nurses and other paramedical staff,” said an attendant.  
Many people present on the PHC premises said that patients from far-flung areas like Mammer, Kachpathri, Gichkhoad, Ganiwan, Surfraw, etc are being referred to Srinagar hospitals for the treatment of minor ailments.
The Primary Health Centre (PHC) Gund has the same story. Though the PHC has enough machinery, it faces a dearth of staff. There is no anesthetist, pediatrician and ophthalmologist. 
“Lakhs of rupees were spent for the establishment of an operation theatre here in 2009, and the PHC does not have a single technician to operate the machinery,” said a local, adding, “The health centre witnesses around 200 patients in its Out Patient Department (OPD) per day.” 
An attendant said the hospital is without the Computerized Tomography (CT) scan machine, due to which the doctors here refer the stroke and trauma patients to Srinagar. “They don’t even have MRI and Digital X-ray facilities,” he said, adding, “How long shall we visit Srinagar or main town Ganderbal.”
In PHC Kullan, a single laboratory technician was transferred a few weeks ago, and the patients coming to the health centre now have to go to private labs for basic tests, said a local.
Locals demanded the laboratory technician should be brought back so that the patients do not face difficulties. 
Chief Medical Officer Ganderbal Dr Afroza Shah didn’t respond to repeated phone calls by this reporter.

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