MP govt to seek assistance from private specialists

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Bhopal, Oct 10 (UNI) Grappling with a paucity of medical specialists in rural areas, the Madhya Pradesh government has decided to seek assistance from private specialists on honorarium.

''From November 1, gynaecologists, paediatricians and other specialists' services will be availed at village hospitals on daily honorarium of Rs 1,000 and vehicle allowance of Rs 5 per km. A budgetary allocation of Rs 10 crore has been made,'' Public Health and Family Welfare Minister Ajay Vishnoi told reporters here today.

The government has urged the Medical Education Department to send third year students of gynaecology and paediatrics to village hospitals for one day every month. Honorarium would be determined for such students.

''The specialists will also offer services at out-patient departments in select primary health centres and community health centres. Medicines will be supplied free of cost at village hospitals. The state has a paucity of more than 1,200 specialists.

The system of appointing doctors on contract basis has been strengthened and 305 contract physicians regularised after completion of two years,'' the Minister added.

Privatisation of government hospitals was being contemplated.

Primary and community health centres located in faraway areas would be privatised on experimental basis. District collectors were authorised to appoint doctors on contract. Under the National Rural Health Mission, 627 accountants would be appointed on contract at primary health centres -- salary Rs 7,500 and transport allowance Rs 500.

''The Director (Health) earlier had virtually unlimited authority but in view of the recent unearthing of a scam, the state government has formed a Central Procurement Cell for purchase of medicine.

Targets will be fixed for doctors and paramedical staff and confidential reports prepared,'' Mr Vishnoi said.

UNI

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