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Doctors Shortage In Govt Run Hospitals: Delhi High Court Issues Notice On Plea For Expeditiously Filling Vacancies

Akshita Saxena
24 Nov 2021 8:00 AM GMT
Doctors Shortage In Govt Run Hospitals: Delhi High Court Issues Notice On Plea For Expeditiously Filling Vacancies
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"There is complete lack of accountability in providing the crucial services like right to life," the plea stated.

The Delhi High Court today issued notice on a PIL seeking immediate appointment of adequate number of doctors including paramedical staffs in government run hospitals like AIIMS, Safdarjung Hospital, Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital etc. The plea also seeks to fill up vacancies in hospitals of local bodies like all MCDs and other bodies including Mohalla clinics being run by the Govt of NCT...

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The Delhi High Court today issued notice on a PIL seeking immediate appointment of adequate number of doctors including paramedical staffs in government run hospitals like AIIMS, Safdarjung Hospital, Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital etc.

The plea also seeks to fill up vacancies in hospitals of local bodies like all MCDs and other bodies including Mohalla clinics being run by the Govt of NCT of Delhi on urgent basis.

The Division Bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh asked the Delhi Government and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to take steps for kickstarting the recruitment process.

"No one is asking you to fill all the vacancies. But at least show some speed," Justice Patel told CGSC Anil Soni, appearing for the Ministry.

The petition has been filed by Dr. Nand Kishore Garg, former MLA of Delhi from Trinagar constituency, citing 30-40% shortages of doctors and paramedical staffs in the government run hospitals.

"There is complete lack of accountability in providing the crucial services like right to life," the plea stated.

He alleged that more than 800 vacancies of doctors in different categories and are laying vacant in AIIMS alone. In Safdarjung hospital, it was stated, there is shortage of 433 doctors and 67 paramedical staffs. In Ram Manohar Lohia hospital, the Petitioner submitted, there are vacancies of more than 100 doctors and paramedical staffs.

The plea thus stated,

"Government run hospitals are unable to treat the patients on time and in such circumstances, the patients either become critical or get inevitable fate of beyond cure… thousands of patients are being denied admission in the government run hospitals on account of lack of infrastructures and acute shortages of manpower and those patients are forced to create a debt or sell their assets to access healthcare from private hospitals by paying exorbitant cost of the treatment."

The Petitioner, represented by Advocate Shashank Deo Sudhi, thus urged the Court to pass directions for expeditiously filling up sanctioned vacancies on urgent basis.

The plea also seeks to strengthen the recruitment process of doctors by replacing "existing bureaucratic and time-consuming process" so that the vacancies of doctors and paramedical staffs may be filled up immediately after the post gets vacant.

During the hearing, CGSC Anil Soni opposed this prayer, stating the recruitment process pertains to service matter and involves policy decision.

Significantly, the Court refused to issue notice on the prayer for constitution of broad-based commission consisting of retired High Court Judge along with a team of senior most doctors to enquire into the Covid-19 deaths in government run hospitals across Delhi.

The matter will now be heard on 12 January, 2022.

Case Title: Dr. Nand Kishore Garg v. GNCTD & Ors.

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