Baripada's ESI dispensary gasps for breath as staff shortage affects services

The acute shortage of staff at the Employees State Insurance (ESI) dispensary in Baripada’s Palabani has adversely affected health care services rendered to the employees registered under it.

Published: 12th October 2022 06:32 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th October 2022 06:32 AM   |  A+A-

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By Express News Service

BARIPADA: The acute shortage of staff at the Employees State Insurance (ESI) dispensary in Baripada’s Palabani has adversely affected health care services rendered to the employees registered under it. Only four staff - a doctor, a nurse, an attendant and a sweeper are all that the dispensary functions with.
The 36-year-old dispensary set up in 1986 was meant to provide health care facilities and financial benefits to employees registered under its insurance scheme. However currently it is in a bad shape.

More than 8,000 employees along with their family members across 26 blocks of the district who are dependent on the ESI dispensary  expressed their discontentment over the poor services. Being ESI card holders, a sum of Rs 300 to Rs 450 is deducted from their monthly salary.

Many of them belonging to Rairangpur, Karanjia and Kaptipada sub-divisions complained of being unable to get the benefits as the dispensary was far away from their locations. They demanded at least three dispensaries in their areas.

On the dearth of staff, the doctor of the dispensary Manoj Kumar Tudu said, “I have to do all the official work, submit documents and referral orders of patients to the headquarters office as the clerk post is lying vacant for over 10 years now. So naturally the health care facility will be disturbed as the nurse or sweeper are not equipped to diagnose and prescribe medicines to patients,” he said adding that though they had a pharmacist to assist him, he retired on August 31.

Tudu further said that though he had written several letters to the director of ESI citing the staff crisis and other problems faced by the dispensary, he did not receive any response. Official sources said, due to political interference, the ESI dispensary is running in Balasore town and the ESIC is running in Balgopal under Remuna block. The government has approved proposals for setting up three additional ESI dispensaries in Jaleswar, Nilagiri and Soro blocks of the district but no steps have been taken in this regard.

“I will write a letter to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and director of ESI appealing to set up at least three dispensaries for the people of Karanjia, Rairangpur and Kaptipada sub-divisions and an ESI Corporation in Baripada to provide health care facilities for the employees,” said former Rajya Sabha MP and Advisor, ST and SC Development, Government of Odisha, Sarojini Hembram.


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