The time when the reducing intensity in the second wave of the pandemic has brought respite to the hapless populations in Jammu & Kashmir, crisis manpower shortage and non availability of basic infrastructural facilities in hospitals demand an immediate attention and intervention of the government. The government has to be reminded while the patient doctor ratio as per the recommendations of the World Health Organisation (WHO) should have been 1: 1000, the patient doctor ratio in Jammu & Kashmir is unfortunately 1: 3866 . The figures themselves show that shortage of manpower facilities is the major challenge for the government as even the average patient doctor ratio in hospitals of other parts of the country is 1:2000. Even this time hundreds of the posts of doctors are falling vacant in health & medical education department but the recruitment of doctors like recruitment for other gazetted posts has come to a grinding halt due to two consecutive covid lockdowns in last two years-one this year and the other one last year. As the shortage of medical staff often pushes managements of the government run hospitals in a state of chaos and crisis, they find it difficult to manage emergencies. Adhocism to stabilize the crisis like situation won’t work always in the absence of required medical staff in government run hospitals particularly in towns and villages. This is the cause for concern keeping in view the challenges thrown by the corona virus spread during last two years and has to be resolved in short time.
For improving the healthcare facilities the government has to focus on issues concerning availability of medical staff, basic infrastructure and prompt patient care facilities in both rural and urban hospitals as this would also ensure that hospitals are fully prepared to face any epidemic or endemic in future.
The health facilities in rural areas is by no standards satisfactory as even diagnostic laboratories were upgraded at Primary Health Centres after their up gradation to Sub District Hospitals (SDHs) in pre-covid normality periods before the breakout of covid-19 pandemic in March last year. Even the complaints about the availability of ambulance services in most of rural hospitals go unnoticed and consequently the patients referred to referral hospitals in Srinagar and Jammu die before reaching the hospitals. So the inspection and monitoring systems have to be improved for furthering the causes of improvement of patient care in both rural and urban hospitals just to ensure that the unwanted delays in the shifting of patients from peripheral to referral hospitals in twin capital cities and other district headquarters don’t become the cause of deaths of patients suffering from critical ailments. For improving the healthcare facilities the government has to focus on issues concerning availability of medical staff, basic infrastructure and prompt patient care facilities in both rural and urban hospitals as this would also ensure that hospitals are fully prepared to face any epidemic or endemic in future.