Chandigarh: The Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), suffers a setback in terms of patient care with nearly 20% posts of doctors besides nursing, technical and other staff, lying vacant.
The Department of Health and Family Welfare presented a report in the Rajya Sabha on March 20 mentioning the issue of staff shortage.
“On a query regarding vacancies against the sanctioned strength, the committee observed that nearly 20% seats are vacant at the institute. Of a total of 8,771 sanctioned posts in various categories, 1,616 are lying vacant,” stated the report.
“The committee strongly recommends that the department should undertake a time-bound exercise to fill the vacancies of medical, paramedical, nursing and technical staff,” the report stated reports HT.
The committee suggested that increasing automation could help reduce the requirement of administrative staff and the resources generated due to it, channelized in employing paramedical or technical staff.
According to data presented by HT, of the 7,544 posts, 1,748 are lying vacant at the institute. Further the data also presents a statistics of 138 post of assistant professors and professors lying vacant, of the total sanctioned strength of 555.
88 posts of senior and junior resident doctors (pursuing post graduation and super-specialty) again are yet to be filled.
There is a shortfall of 300 nurses in different categories. 70 posts of assistant nursing superintendents,179 posts of nursing officers and 11 vacancies of senior nursing officers exists at the PGIMER.
The sanitation department is facing a shortage of a 100 employees.
The staff shortage presents a pathetic scene at the country’s premier health hub, with waiting period for surgeries running into several months and hours of waiting at registration counters for a slip becoming the fate of patients walking in.
Recently, HT revealed that eight operation theaters (OTs) are lying locked at the institute, due to manpower shortage.
“We have proposed to the PGIMER, Director that we need at least 82 more anesthetists, 75 technicians, six per fusionists and more staff in nursing department for efficiency,” said a senior doctor.
“There should be one nurse for a patient in the intensive care unit (ICU). But at times, we have just one nurse looking after three-four patients in the ICU,” said another official.
Nearly 8,000 patients visit the new OPD (out-patient department) at the PGIMER daily, and nearly 2 lakh fresh ones are added on, every year.
To combat the shortage of staff , Former Officiating Director, Dr Subhash Varma had started the process of recruiting staff- twice a year.
Amitabh Avasthi, Deputy Director (administration), PGIMER, said, “Recruitment is an ongoing process. We are filling posts on a regular basis. Now, we have started the process of filling faculty posts twice a year. Apart from this, PGIMER has also demanded creation of new posts in different categories.”