Uttar Pradesh, the largest of all Indian states has a population of about 21 Crore. This requires and matching health services, particularly from government sector. But, the figures are dismal. There are 23 medical colleges in the state out of which only 9 are run by government. The reality remains that there is one government run medical college for every 2.44 crore population!
A report by the2is.com’s Special Representative:
Deaths of children in the Gorakhpur Medical College in Uttar Pradesh have made quite a furor. At the same time it has exposed the pitiable conditions in them. Overcrowding, apathy, corruption and negligence are the part of the daily routine of all government run medical facilities. The situation is more so because the massive gap between demand and supply.
Health Services in U.P
- 22 Crore estimated population.
- 09 government run medical colleges
- 14 private medical colleges.
- 11,646 beds in government medical colleges
- 61,412 beds in other government hospital
The Uttar Pradesh state budget for health sector in the current financial year is 1405.81 Crore. But the lions share goes into infrastructure including plan and non-plan expenditure that is salary and wages, infra development etc. What remains for medicines and treatment of patients is hopelessly low. For example, the Kanpur Medical College has received Rs. 5.28 Crore for medicines and taking into account the number of beds in its hospital, the per bed expenditure is a mere Rs. 79.26. A large number of patients from adjoining state such as Bihar, Madhya Pradesh etc. and Nepal come to hospitals and medical colleges in U.P. for treatment. If such patients are taken into account, the per person expenditure on actual treatment comes to a very dismal level.
Dependency on private sector
There is a shortage of over 7,000 doctors in government hospitals. The reality is that doctors are not willing to take up government jobs any more. In 2011, recruitment process for medical officers was initiated and 1,784 candidates were selected but only 608 took postings. This is a factor that clampdown on private practice is never enforced.
No quality control
Lack of government facilities has led to spread of private hospitals and clinics but there is no control over them. In such a scenario, the Clinical Establishments Act was passed by Parliament on 17 August, 2010, to provide for registration and regulation of all clinical establishments in the country with a view to prescribing minimum standards of facilities and services. State governments including Uttar Pradesh have notified the Act but there is no knowledge of the Act on the ground level. There is absolutely no quality control.