RAYAGADA: The tall claims of State Government for providing quality healthcare to people fall flat when it comes to health centres in Rayagada district. A case in point is the Kashipur Community Health Centre (CHC).
Located at Kashipur, 70 km away from the District Headquarters Hospital, the CHC has six primary health centres (PHCs) under it and caters to a population of more than 1.5 lakh in 20 gram panchayats. Although a couple of years have passed since it was upgraded to a CHC from PHC, the health facility continues to be dogged by administrative neglect.
There are four sanctioned specialist posts in the CHC - medicine, paediatric, gynaecology and anaesthesia. All the four specialist posts and that of medical officer are vacant for the last two years.
The CHC runs with eight beds against the sanctioned 16 without even basic infrastructure facilities like an operation theatre.
Sources said the hospital is being manned by one regular doctor and another doctor from Kucheipadar PHC who has been deputed to Kashipur CHC. The health centre provides care to at least 100 to 200 outdoor patients daily and conducts 80 delivery cases per month on an average. Complicated delivery cases are referred to the District Headquarters Hospital. Even the Rogi Kalyan Samiti office on the CHC premises does not function properly in the absence of staff.
The samiti is expected to ensure community participation in monitoring the functioning of the CHC and improving the service delivery by making doctors more responsive to the community needs. It is also empowered to check on transparent use of flexible funds being made available to the CHC.
The situation is similar in other parts of the block, which has one CHC and six PHCs. For these seven health centres, there are only three MBBS doctors and four Ayush doctors. Of the PHCs, only Tikiri PHC has an MBBS doctor.
Chief District Medical Officer Ananda Padhi said the Health Department has been informed about the problems arising out of vacancies time and again, but to no avail. “We are forced to manage the show with the existing staff,” he added.
As per the norms fixed by Indian Public Health Standard (IPHS), a PHC should be established for every 20,000 population in tribal areas and every 30,000 population in plain areas. A PHC should have one doctor.
A CHC should be set up for every 1.2 lakh population in plain areas and 80,000 population in tribal areas. As per IPHS norms, a CHC should have eight doctors.
Apparently, as per the Health Department’s report, 74 doctor posts are vacant in Rayagada district. Every year, Kashipur block faces cholera and diarrhoea and in the absence of adequate healthcare facilities and doctors, the diseases take epidemic proportion.