Robust Health Adding Glow To The City Beautiful's Charm
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Robust Health Adding Glow To The City Beautiful’s Charm

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Dr G Dewan

The Chandigarh Administration has ensured quality and accessible healthcare facilities to people of Chandigarh. With a state-of the- art faculty and technology-equipped facilities, the city’s government hospitals have all amenities to cater people. Faring well on various healthcare parameters, the city is setting good example for others to learn from, says Dr G Dewan, Mission Director, National Health Mission, Chandigarh, in conversation with Priya Yadav of Elets News Network (ENN).

A surprising thing about this beautiful city, that sets it apart from other cities in the country, is that services, across verticals, in the Government sector are superior to those being offered by the private sector.

This is true for health services in Chandigarh. Residents are spoilt for choice as even your neighbourhood Government health centre is far more efficient, effective and cheaper than any private health clinic.

Chandigarh administration has left no stone unturned to provide the best health services to its residents at the cheapest possible rates, providing state of the art diagnostic facilities to the poorest of the poor and the best patient care.

The density of health centres, workers per person is the highest in the country in this city, thanks to the stupendous upgradation of old infrastructure and the addition of new.

This has ensured that the health facilities are ahead of times and they are so good that Government hospitals, health centres are not just the obvious choice of the poor but of the senior most bureaucrats, VVIPS and their families as well.

On visiting a Government hospital in Chandigarh, you don’t get to see broken beds or dirty toilets. Instead, a swank, salubrious set up will greet you, complete with efficient staff and advanced diagnostic facilities.

The registration card is made free now keeping in view difficulty to have Rs 2.

Dr G Dewan, the Director, Health Services of Chandigarh Administration, who is also the Mission Director National Health Mission and Chief Registrar, births and deaths, has been instrumental role in shaping the Government healthcare in the city.

The last three decades have witnessed Dr Dewan conceive, plan, execute meticulously most ambitious of health plans of the Chandigarh Administration.

Speaking to eHealth magazine, Dr Dewan traces the journey down the decades and the road ahead. Excerpts:

Q How has the health landscape in the Government sector changed in Chandigarh over past few decades?

Chandigarh was conceived to cater to population less than two lakh but the high standard of living here has attracted people from across the city and the population has grown phenomenally. Over the time, a number of people seeking health services also increased.

The numbers of patients queuing up in and out patient departments have gone up 100 times over. So have the facilities that the health department provides. The general hospital has been upgraded hugely, in terms of infrastructure, services, number of departments and facilities.

A new administration block has been constructed at Government Medical Speciality Hospital Sector 16 at a cost of Rs 17 crore. A sixbedded intensive care unit is being set up which will be equipped with state of art equipment for highly morbid patients. A blood component separation unit is being set up to make available platelets for dengue patients and other needy patients.

And we are just adding more and more services with passage of time. A 100-bedded hospital is being built in Sector 48 which will provide multi-speciality services to people in the southern sectors. A 50-bedded hospital is coming up at Village Maloya and another 50-bedded hospital at village Dhanas.

An AYUSH hospital is coming up at Sector 34 in Chandigarh. Civil hospital Manimajra has been upgraded to 100 beds. The Polyclinic at Sector 45 has been upgraded to the Urban Community Health Center which is in-operation 24 hours a day.

A 100-bedded hospital has been constructed in sector 48 at the cost of Rs 38 crore. A new Civil dispensary has been made functional at sector 49. This is besides upgrading the existing infrastructure. Two Community Health Centres – one in Manimajra and the second in Sector 22 have been grouped under the category of five-star ratings.

Q What are the e-initiatives taken to streamline the functioning of health department?

Chandigarh has implemented the Reproductive and Child Health Portal, a Government of India initiative, to track timely delivery of maternal and child health services in Chandigarh. Chandigarh has been selected for piloting of Reproductive and Child Health portal by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.

We have launched Aadhar Enabled Civil Registration System for newborns and infants. We are doing 100 per cent facility based data reporting under Health Management Information System.

An eHealth kiosk has been made functional at Dhanas with teleconferencing and tele-consultation facility along with three Electronic Health Centre sites.

All the details of chemist shops and manufacturers of drugs have been uploaded on National Health Mission (NHM) website for public information. An eHospital module has been made functional at two city hospitals, GMSH, sector 16 and CHC at sector 45. We are doing 100 per cent DBT for ASHA and contractual staff.

Q How has efficient delivery of health services impacted the health of city residents?

When effective health services are delivered, timely and at no great cost, it works for the betterment of the society at large besides off course impacting the residents. There are several initiatives that have paid off well. For instance, we successfully implemented an action plan to improve maternal health. This has resulted in reduction of home deliveries to 1 per cent in Chandigarh, the lowest in the country.

The infant mortality rate has been reduced to 14 from 21 as per Sample Registration System. New initiatives have been implemented for improving the immunisation – first of its kind initiative where during the national immunisation day of pulse polio teams are sent across the city to vaccinate the children of the homeless, beggars and ragpickers as Night Vigil teams under Project Taare Zameen Par was a great success whereby more than 250 children were vaccinated at night hours.

Chandigarh has reported 100% prevention of parent to child transmission of HIV. The RNTCP (Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme) Cure rate was 90.65% for 2017 and 93.3% in 2018 till date while the case detection is 72%. Chandigarh has been ranked first among the union territories for achieving the targets the institutions’ cure rate and case detection rate.

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