Govt fails to conduct infra audit in health sector

Irfan Tramboo
SRINAGAR, July 9: While the Government has left no stone unturned in creating infrastructure in the health sector, it has so far failed in conducting a comprehensive infrastructure audit like it did for the manpower that brought to fore several shortcomings.
The Health and Medical Education (H&ME) has not bothered to carry out the audit of the infrastructure that has been created over decades. The department does not have any concrete idea about the shortcomings in the infrastructure and similarly the excesses that usually come after the audit is carried out.
Sources told Excelsior that nothing concrete has been done so far with regard to carrying out the audit. “As of now, nothing concrete has been done so far in this direction as the department has not bothered to carry out the exercise which is a must for the effective governance,” sources said.
The manpower audit carried out by the H&ME Department in March 2018-the report of which was published as well-had pointed out various discrepancies in the availability of the manpower from the primary healthcare to that of tertiary healthcare, following which the department engaged more than 100 Medical Officers to do away with the shortage.
In case of specialized manpower in the tertiary healthcare, the report had also noted that in GMC, Jammu, out of 60 sanctioned posts of Professors only 53 were filled and 7 are vacant and out of 62 posts of Associate Professors, 46 are filled and 16 are vacant. Out of 69 posts of Assistant Professors, 43 are filled and 26 are vacant.
Similarly, the report had also highlighted that in GMC Srinagar, out of 71 sanctioned posts of Professors, 47 were filled and 24 are vacant. Against 79 posts of Associate Professors, 51 are filled and 28 are vacant and out of 106 posts of Assistant Professors, 60 are filled and 46 are vacant.
Likewise, the audit report had pointed to the vacancy of posts at Super Specialty Hospital in Srinagar, the report had said that there are 14 posts of Professors in SSH Srinagar out of which only one is filled while remaining 13 are vacant.
While the Government had got an idea about the lacunae in the manpower in the health sector after carrying the audit, it is however, dangling in the air with regard to the infrastructure that has been amassed.
Sources said that the mapping is necessary when it comes to the infrastructure, as it has to be seen where actually the lacunae are, and after getting the idea, the department proceeds accordingly. However, the department seems to be amassing the infrastructure without having an idea about the requirements on the ground.
“It is a must to get everything audited in order to know the functionality and the requirements thereof-which is only possible if the audit is carried out. In the absence of an audit, the department does not know about the level of functionality and the requirements in the field.