HindustanTimes Sat,27 Dec 2014

Govt fails to spend crucial health funds

Sidhartha Dutta, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, July 22, 2013
First Published: 21:45 IST(22/7/2013) | Last Updated: 19:43 IST(20/8/2013)


Just 28.9% of the Rs. 31,069.13 lakh allocated to the Delhi State Health Mission (DSHM) in 2012-13 were utilised, a reply to an RTI application has revealed.

The state government spent only Rs. 8979.52 lakh on the much-hyped public health programme meant to provide quality healthcare to all.

Despite Delhi having to battle dengue, malaria and chikungunya each year, not a single rupee was spent in the implementation of the National Vector-Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP) for which as much as Rs. 6.2 crore had been allotted.

The government spent the least on flagship programmes meant to improve maternal health (10.03% of the funds), including the Janani Suraksha Yojana, and child health (5.75% of the funds).

Only Rs. 2.32 crore of the allocated Rs. 23.14 crore was spent on maternal health programmes last year. Similarly, Rs. 46.45 lakh were spent on childcare of the total Rs. 4.25 crore.

No money was spent on running mobile medical units and mainstreaming of Ayush (Ayurveda, yoga, unani, siddha and homeopathy), which had allocations of Rs. 46.45 lakh and Rs. 1.63 lakh.

The reply also helped to show that strengthening of hospital infrastructure got poor attention with a total expenditure of 10. 09%. Rs. 7.57 lakh was spent of the total allotment of Rs. 75.05 lakh to upgrade the hospitals in the state.

In terms of procurement and new construction/renovation, the spending was as low as 1.66% and 3.24%. Of a whopping allotment of Rs. 18.39 crore, only Rs. 30.5 lakh were spent in procurement. Just Rs. 14.9 crore were spent on renovation across the state of the total Rs. 45.92 crore allotted.

Corpus grant to HMS/RKs (hospital management societies/ rogi kalyan samitis) saw a utilisation of infinitesimal 0.69% of the total allocation, while PNDT (pre-natal diagnostic techniques) services saw expenditure of 9.40% of the total.

ASHA programme and Family Planning & Sterilization & IUD Compensation and NSV saw utilisation of 20.63% and 24.70% of the total allotment.

Delhi health minister Ashok Kumar Walia said most of the projects for which funds were allocated had just been initiated, and so the funds were shown as unspent or unutilized. "A few of the projects were carried forward from the previous budget (2011-12), therefore the allocation for those in this budget were unutilised," the minister said.

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