Odisha: MLA Treats Patient as Doctors Remain Absent in Govt Hospital

Bhubaneswar: An Odisha MLA was on Wednesday seen offering services to patients and prescribing medicines at a Community Health Centre (CHC) in Sundargarh district’s Rajgangpur in the absence of doctors.

CS Raazen Ekka, the Congress lawmaker who holds a medical degree, took up the doctor’s duty at the hospital after patients complained that there were no doctors at the hospital for a few days now. The incident exposed the sorry state of affairs in government healthcare facilities in rural pockets.

The lawmaker received appreciations from patients for his gesture. Patients in large numbers were seen visiting the health centre for health check-up.

The patients alleged that while the state government was patting its own back with claims of transforming the health services through various initiatives, the reality on the ground is completely different.

Speaking to the reporters, Congress MLA Ekka said, “I think we are failing in providing basic health services to the people. I had worked as a medical officer previously. Since I did not see any doctors here in the last three-four days, I took up the responsibility to see patients in the absence of doctors.”

“The health department should have looked after the patients. It is their responsibility. But if they fail, being the local MLA and a doctor at the same time, I come forward to see patients at the hospital,” he added.

The local informed that many CHCs in the districts did not have doctors as per their sanctioned strength. As a result, the poor people are forced to visit private hospitals in Sundergarh town and Rourkela, spending a lot of money.

“Most of the people living in rural parts of Sundergarh are tribal. They don’t have a good financial background. Unfortunately, as they don’t find doctors in their local hospitals, they visit private hospitals by selling their household articles or borrowing money from neighbours or relatives,” said the legislator.

The state health department officials were unavailable for comments in this regard.

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