News Karnataka
Sunday, April 21 2024

Govt to hand over PHCs to pvt medical bodies on condition: Khader

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Mangaluru: The State government will revoke its decision of taking back public health centres (PHC) from government or private medical colleges, non-government organisations and/or societies for being managed under the ‘Arogya Bandhu’ scheme only if they agree to a new condition which will be imposed by the government, Health Minister UT Khader informed.

Earlier, as per the guidelines of Medical Association of India, the government handed over three PHCs to medical bodies either to fully manage the PHCs with financial assistance by Karnataka government or contribute to the improvement of their facilities, or improve service delivery without directly managing the PHCs. The government in December decided to withdraw the scheme as it was reportedly unsatisfied with their work, and hence the ‘Arogya Bandhu’ scheme was quashed.

Khader today said that he was contemplating to give back the PHCs to the medical bodies on a condition that they would adopt five PHCs instead of three. He said that the scheme will be a part of a new project which is being formulated. A meeting will soon be held with all the medical bodies, he added.

The State Health Department has formed Vision Committee to create awareness on the new and existing government schemes among the public and ensure that they avail all facilities.

The government has already introduced a scheme wherein cataract surgeries and treatments will be done free of cost to both the BPL as well as the APL card holders. It intends to avail the services in both government and private hospitals. However, according to a medical officer, currently patients can only avail the facility in hospitals which have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the government. Khader directed the officials to streamline the issue and ensure that the facility is available in all hospitals across the state and facilitate easy access to public.

Also, the government is mulling to provide free spectacles to all school children suffering both long and short sightedness. To avail this, the beneficiary needs to have a Vision Certificate from an authorized optician.

Chairman of Vision Committee Dr Chandrashekhar Shetty said that it is planning to introduce to columns on visual and hearing capacity in school admission forms alongside the parents’ names, caste and other parameters. He said this will help create awareness and also the government will have a concrete statistics on the visual and hearing capacities of children. Once the spectacles are provided to deficient students, the designated health teams will check-up the students every year and prescribe necessary changes in their spectacle power.

This scheme will be introduced upcoming academic year onwards, Khader said.

Also, BPL candidates above 40 years of age will be entitled to free reading glasses from the government. During the Vision Committee meeting today, a plan to make these spectacles available in generic stores was proposed and is likely to be approved.

In order to reach out to maximum number of people in villages, Khader directed medical officers to constitute teams which will visit villages once in 15 days and create camps there. Free eye screening will be held and people with defects will be subject to free treatment.

The whole idea behind these plans is to provide better vision to the state denizens, Khader said.

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