Aiming to improve health services in Uttar Pradesh, the Yogi Adityanath government is contemplating to start evening OPDs in state-run hospitals.
Besides, new avenues are being explored to appoint doctors in far-flung primary and community health centres (PHCs/CHCs).
An announcement to this effect was made by Health Minister Sidharth Nath Singh in the Assembly on Monday.
In reply to a question of Congress member Aditi Singh, the Health Minister said that the government was considering a proposal to commence evening OPDs in government hospitals from Tuesday to Saturday.
“A project is on the anvil, which needs Cabinet approval. But for the time being, a pilot project is underway in collaboration with IMA, Kanpur,” he said.
Singh said that the BJP government was committed to providing better health facilities in the state and was therefore looking for an option of evening OPD.
Replying to another question of Samajwadi Party member Manoj Kumar Pandey, Singh said that the government was doing whatever was required to strengthen the health system in the state.
He said the government had started tele-consultations in all districts and tele-medicine facilities in 28 districts.
“When the BJP government assumed office (in UP) in 2017, there were 7,338 vacancies of doctors in the state which have now come down to 2,230. Besides, during the past two years, the government has started health care facilities at 52 primary health centres and 47 community health centres,” the minister said.
The SP MLA countered, saying that as many as 697 deaths were reported due to treatment by quacks in the want of proper medical facilities in villages this year. He said that buildings of 18 CHCs and 10 PHCs were ready but were non-operational because of lack of doctors and paramedics.
To a question of SP member Sanjay Garg, the Health Minister said that the number of AES (Acute Encephalitis Syndrome) patients had decreased and so far only 25 deaths were reported in 2019, there were 248 AES deaths in 2018 and 644 in 2017.
“We have taken several measures to counter the virus, including vaccination and setting up of ventilators in affected districts,” Singh said.
The SP member, however, alleged that after the 2017 incident at BRD Medical College Hospital in Gorakhpur, the media had been banned and now the government was covering up the deaths of AES patients.
To another question, the Health Minister said that at present 2,200 ambulances were in operation under 108 service and 2,270 ambulances were operating under 102 service in the state.