Healthcare Services: 52% Of Doctors’ Posts Lying Vacant In Odisha’s Ganjam District

Berhampur: In a reflection of poor healthcare services in Odisha, around 52% of doctors’ posts are lying vacant in Ganjam district.

According to the data available from Health and Family Welfare department, the state government has sanctioned total 567 doctors’ posts in the hospitals from community health centres to district headquarters hospital in Ganjam except MKCG Medical College and Hospital in Berhampur.

Out of the sanctioned posts, 273 doctors have been appointed, while the rest 294 posts are lying vacant, accounting for 51.85% of the total posts. The appointed doctors include 189 in regular posts and 4 in ad hoc posts, while 67 doctors are working on contractual basis and 13 are PG students.

The medical services in rural areas are the worst affected due to large scale vacancies in doctors’ posts. As per the government norm, at least 10 doctors should be appointed in community health centres (CHCs), but 2 doctors are rendering services in most of these centres in the district.

The CHCs in Sorada, Jagannathprasad and even Kukudakhandi near district headquarters Berhampur have two doctors each. If one of them goes on leave, only one doctor has to attend to the patients coming to the CHC.

In a bid to fill up the vacancies, the government has appointed the PG medical students from different colleges in the CHCs. But most of them go on higher studies and others quit the jobs for some reasons or the other.

Besides the doctors’ posts, those of pharmacists and nurses are also lying vacant in health centres across the district.

During a visit to the district, Dr Bijay Kumar Panigarhy, director, Health and Family Welfare had held a review meeting on the healthcare services and vacancies of doctors’ posts a few days back. Admitting that the number of doctors appointed in the district was not adequate, he said the problem prevails in almost all the states in the country.

However, he hoped that the problem would be solved as the government is opening medical colleges in different parts of the state. Once the doctors pass out from those colleges, the scenario of medical services would improve to a great extent, Dr Panigrahy said.

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