JK registers a decline in number of 24×7 functional PHC’s  

Srinagar: The state health department has considerably decreased the number of Public Health Centres (PHCs) that were functional round the clock. The move has put extra pressure on the tertiary healthcare system at the centre, and secondary healthcare system functional in peripheries.

As per the data that has been provided to the centre for the compilation of its report on the Health Index, there has been 8 percent decrease in the number of PHCs that are functional round the clock, creating a dent in the functioning of the primary healthcare system, with added effects on the parallel running lines of care.

“The functioning of 24×7 PHCs is important for providing a basic package of health services to the community and for reducing the workload at higher level facilities,” observes the NITI Aayog’s report titled ‘Healthy States, Progressive India.’

As per the data that has been provided to the centre by the state on round the clock functional PHCs, there was already less number of PHCs working round the clock where, a dip of additional 8 per cent has been observed.

“…a decline of five or more percentage points was observed in Karnataka (9 percentage points), Jammu & Kashmir (8 percentage points), Tamil Nadu (19 percentage points), Punjab (9 percentage points), Mizoram (55 percentage points) and Tripura (8 percentage points),” the report on health Index states while observing the numbers on Proportion of functional 24×7 PHCs .

For the year 2014-15 there were 53. 6 per cent of PHCs functioning round the clock in the state, the percent which came down to 45.6 per cent for the year 2015-16, indicating a dip of almost 8 per cent in terms of PHCs that are functional round the clock in the state.

As of now, 232 Primary Health Centres PHCs / MMCs are functional in Kashmir, with the higher number of functional PHCs-40 in district Budgam. Interestingly, more than PHCs, there are 325 New Type PHCs functional in Kashmir, with higher number of NTPHCs: 53 functional in district Baramulla.

In Jammu division, there are 174 PHCs functional with 117 NTPHCs functional in full swung, with the higher number of PHCs: 34 functional in Jammu district and 20 NTPHCs functional in district Doda.

The state government has time and again been criticized for its irrational creation of infrastructure when it comes to the healthcare system, with government itself accepting the fact that it has been creating additional infrastructure, while coming under the pressure of respective MLAs in various constituencies.

The case, which validates the irrational creation of infrastructure, and then abandoning the facility for want of manpower, is Khansahab Constituency where, as per the government only one PHC has been sanctioned by the government, however, the number of PHCs functional is four, with three additionally created without possessing all the requirements to make all such facilities functional.

Experts are saying that without having a proper plan of action, all such ventures are proving to be futile.

“All such initiatives are proving to be counterproductive, while they should actually be putting a positive impact on the system, the non-seriousness on the part of the planners is ruining the entire setup ,” said a doctor.

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