Srinagar: National Conference Member of Parliament Anantnag Hassnain Masoodi on Tuesday visited various health facilities in South Kashmir to assess the Covid control mechanism measures and availability of Covid care drugs, testing kits and vaccines.
Masoodi today visited SDH Shangus, SDH Achabal, PSC Chatergul to evaluate the pace of vaccination and quality of Covid care available to people at the facilities. During the visit, it was brought to his notice that the vaccines, RT-PCR and other testing kits are reasonably available at the health centers but due to the lack of awareness about vaccines among the people in rural areas, the process of vaccination has slowed thus affecting the inoculation drive considerably. During his day-long tour of the health facilities, Masoodi interacted with health workers and various civil society members and groups, who rued the deficiency of deficiency of staff and health facilities at SDH Shangus and Achabal, and PSC Chatergul.
Expressing satisfaction over the reasonable availability of vaccines and testing kits at the health facilities, Masoodi said it was the deficiency of manpower that was a point of concern among the locals. He also stated that the poor awareness among the rural people about the vaccination is a grievous issue which if left unaddressed will severely affect the vaccination drive. He impressed upon the incumbent administration to take all possible steps to ensure awareness about the vaccination reaches digitally dark rural people, saying the lack of awareness and education about the vaccination in rural communities will increase the suffering and imperil more lives during the imminent third wave.
Stressing on raising awareness through community leaders, ASHA workers, and sustained media campaigns in the local vernacular press, he asked the administration to take appropriate steps in that direction to make universal inoculation certain in rural areas. Masoodi also asked the administration to make inoperative operation theater functional at SDH Achabal as the facility, he said caters to the populace of nearly one lac in its catchment area. He also impressed upon the incumbent government to take immediate steps to make good the deficiency of staff in the health facilities across south Kashmir districts by engaging medical and Para medical graduates and post graduates to give flip to the battle against the Covid. Masoodi also sought augmentation of health facilities and manpower at PSC Chatergul, SDH Achabal and SDH Shangus. Party MP also asked the government to expedite work on the Achabal –Chatbal road to ensure swift commute of the people and emergency services in the area. Masoodi also hailed DC Shopian and his team for achieving 100 percent vaccinations in the 45 plus age group. The credit for reaching the target, according to Masoodi, must go to the District Development Commissioner Shopian for his leadership and strong commitment to the cause, CMO Shopian and scores of dedicated frontline health workers who helped to make the aim a reality. While recording appreciation for the District Development Commissioner Shopian and his team, we must not lose sight of the challenges that the team had to face, that may not be confronted by some other districts, the statement adds. He has expressed the hope that Shopian will repeat the performance when it comes to vaccinating the 18 – 45 age group.
Masoodi has, however, expressed concern over slow and sluggish pace of vaccination in other districts apparently because of inadequate vaccine supply. It is stated that the average rate of vaccination in the other three districts of south Kashmir in the 45 plus age group reportedly is only 57 p.c. The administration must improve and increase vaccine supply so that total vaccination of people above 45 years is achieved at the earliest. Masoodi has also expressed anxiety over disparity in vaccination in two divisions. It is stated that as per latest available details as on 24th May 2021, against total of 15,85,629 vaccine doses administered in 10 districts of Jammu, reportedly only 14,12,582 vaccine doses have been administered in 10 districts of Kashmir and while 5,84,259 vaccine doses have been administered in the Jammu district alone, less than half of that number i.e 2,15,822 vaccine doses have been administered in Srinagar district. Reportedly, the above 45 year vaccination has reached over 90 p.c in Jammu Division but is just over 65 p.c in Kashmir Division, the statement adds. It is stated that vaccination at a quicker pace is to be encouraged and appreciated irrespective of the region and there cannot be any objection to speeding up the pace, unless the disparity in vaccination is attributable to the uneven vaccine supply to the two regions. Yet some kind of uniformity is to be maintained in vaccine supply to all regions, zones and districts so that speed of vaccination across Jammu and Kashmir gains momentum.