Editorial: State’s healthcare needs some care

Srinagar: Peripheral healthcare system in the state is literally functioning in shambles, with mushrooming of healthcare facilities in terms of infrastructure being stressed on over the past few decades now.

The creation of infrastructure may seem that the healthcare system in the state is improving, and this is the impression that is being given the population, however the situation seems to be contrary.

Vote bank politics can be termed as the major element which has been deteriorating the healthcare system in the state. With politicians pressing for more and more infrastructural build up in their respective constituencies, which may be pleasing to the people living in such areas, but the analysis depict that it actually is degrading the overall functioning and the efficiency of the state healthcare.

Taking the example of District Ganderbal, there are more than three healthcare facilities available within the radius of mere 15 kilometres, given the fact that the premier healthcare institution of the state: SKIMS is situated at a 20 minute drive from the district. There clearly was no use of having such an infrastructural build-up.

What happens with the buildup of such an infrastructure, where it is not even needed, is that it puts an extra burden on the already existing healthcare system in the state. There also pops a compelling need of accommodating the manpower at those additional created facilities. The cycle goes on and on and the absence of the manpower is felt at places where there is more need, thus creating imbalance.

The situation is not this simple. Even the additionally created infrastructure is facing the paucity of manpower, leaving them defunct. Apart from leaving them defunct, the additional creation of infrastructure is putting enormous pressure on the state exchequer, with more money being drawn for the maintenance, and not paving a way for the enhancement of the already existing healthcare system, which is in dire need of change.

The state is shockingly missing a comprehensive healthcare policy, which is creating a void when it comes to the effective implementation of policies, where there are multiple loopholes.

There is a dire need for the state to devise a comprehensive healthcare policy which eventually will pave a way for the enhancement of the healthcare system in the state.

There is also a need of keeping the healthcare system aloof from politics; there has to be less or no influence of politicians in taking policy decisions pertaining to the healthcare system.

Moreover, it is imperative to take all the state holders on board—especially the major medico bodies of the state who have been time and again pitching for the major policy changes in terms of healthcare—in order to formulate a long term, effective road map to reach to the point where from a new thread of change will be followed.





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