Health staff want better deal

There are nearly 17,500 vacancies that needs to be filled


The Karnataka State Health and Family Welfare Services and Medical Education Department Employees Central Association have organised a conference at Palace Ground on October 24 to discuss the demands and strategy to be taken up with the State. Around 20,000 government health employees from across the State are expected to participate in the meet, to be inaugurated by the Chief Minister.

Redressal of grievances
According to the association's vice president A Puttaswamy, the meeting’s objective is to present their grievances to the government. "There is an acute staff crunch in most hospitals. The hospitals increase their beds but don't increase the staff needed," he said, adding that there were about 17,500 vacancies, which needed to be filled in the State. The Association has also opposed the government's move to privatise and give autonomous status to PHCs and government hospitals. At present, 120 PHCs in the State are privatised and some hospitals have become autonomous, including Victoria Hospital, Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital, Government Medical College, Mysore etc, said Puttuswamy.

"With McKenna Hospital in Shimoga becoming autonomous, the hospital has transferred nearly all their staff to the new district hospital in Shikaripur. They did not even consult the staff to know if they would find it inconvenient to move to the other hospital,” he added. The association has 70,000 members from 157 cadres ranging from paramedics to clerical staff.

Demands
* Creation of new posts in the hospitals,
* Fill vacancies in the government hospitals and health centres, promotions and increments sought
* Timely salaries to be given to PHC workers and other field staff like female health workers coming under Zilla Parishad
* Opposition to privatise government hospitals and health centres and autonomous status sought
* Implement revised C & R norms in autonomous hospitals and revise it every five years.
* Train the existing staff in latest technology

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