CUTTACK: The Orissa High Court on Wednesday, November 17, 2021, assigned the District Legal Services Authority (DLSA) in all the 30 districts with the job of finding out whether doctors are carrying on private practice without attending their duties in government hospitals.
Lawyer Chittaranjan Mohanty had in a petition raised the serious issue of doctors attached to district headquarter hospitals (DHHs), community health centres (CHCs) and primary health centres (PHCs) carrying on their private practice without attending to their duties in the government facilities. This was having a detrimental effect on the availability of quality health care throughout Odisha.
In its order, the division bench of Chief Justice S Muralidhar and Justice AK Mohapatra said the secretary of every DLSA will constitute a team of four persons which will include two lawyers, preferably a man and a woman, and two para-legal volunteers who will undertake random visits to the DHH, one CHC and two PHCs in the district at different hours unannounced and record whether all the personnel - doctors, nurses and ward staff who are supposed to be attending duty at that particular facility - are in fact doing so.
“The general condition of each such DHH, CHC and PHC will be captured either by photographs or video clips. This would be done on two days during different periods of time. Each team will submit their report along with photographs or video clips in a pen drive to the secretary DLSA concerned”, the bench said.
It further specified that the exercise must be completed before November 30. The reports will then be sent by the secretaries of DLSAs in a sealed cover to reach the High Court on or before December 3. The bench fixed December 15 as the next date for hearing on the matter.