New Delhi: Observing that status of health care in the national capital is better than other states but not adequate in absolute terms, the Delhi High Court today directed the city government to expedite the process of recruiting doctors and nurses to hospitals run by the state.
A bench of Acting Chief Justice B D Ahmed and Justice S Mridul also observed that the nearly 40 per cent vacancies in government hospitals for the posts of medical officers and specialists is a “human resource problem”.
The court made the observation after the Health Secretary of Delhi government submitted that a recruitment drive is underway to induct over 600 medical officers and more than 200 specialists in the hospitals run by the state.
The official also assured the court that efforts are underway to fill up the vacancies in the hospitals so that the people do not suffer from want of adequate skilled manpower.
He also said that the immediate manpower requirement of some hospitals shall be taken care of by interim measures.
After hearing the submissions of the Health Secretary, the bench directed the Directorate of Health Services to submit after four weeks a status report indicating the progress in recruitment of skilled manpower, like nurses and doctors, and availability of consumables, like medicines, in all hospitals run by the state.
The court said the status report be filed a week before the next date of hearing, May 14.
The Health Secretary also submitted that Delhi perhaps is the only state where health budget is in excess of 10 per cent of the state budget and that the NCT of Delhi accounts for 4.15 per cent of total health expenditure of the country for just over one per cent of the nation’s total population.
In response to the figures quoted by the official, the court said,”It seems that health care (here) is better than other states, but it does not mean that it is adequate in absolute terms”.
The court was hearing a petition, filed in 2012 by Vikas Saini and others against the Directorate of Health Services, seeking better health care facilities and more staff in hospitals run by the state government.