Two super-speciality hospitals built at over Rs 150 crore are wasting away in the capital for the last four years. The Delhi government has not been able to hire doctors and paramedics to run them.
The 650-bed Rajiv Gandhi Superspeciality hospital in Tahirpur and a 300-bed hospital in Janakpuri were inaugurated in 2008 to cater to a daily footfall of 10,000 patients in north and west Delhi.The areas do not have super-speciality hospitals for cardio-neuro-gastro emergencies. All the big speciality government hospitals are in south and central Delhi and overburdened.
Asked about the staff crunch, Delhi health minister Dr AK Walia said: "Delhi doesn't have full statehood and all recruitments are through the UPSC. For the last 3-4 years, they haven't hired, leading to this massive shortfall."
Earlier, the Delhi government had approached the Delhi State Cancer Institute to use the Tahirpur hospital for its expansion. The institute refused as the hospital was more than a kilometre away.
Last year, Walia recruited over 500 doctors on ad-hoc basis to fill up over 700 vacancies in 41 Delhi hospitals, but soon the doctors started demanding permanent posts and fulltime benefits given in government service.
Unable to find staff, the government is now handing over the Tahirpur hospital, and also possibly the one in Janakpuri, to the Centre.
"We are giving the Tahirpur hospital to the Centre and looking at handing over the Janakpuri hospital as well," said Walia.
Former health minister Kiran Walia had invited private players in 2009 to run the Tahirpur hospital under the private-partnership model. The government was to provide the building while the private party would take care of manpower and medical services.
The deal fell apart as the bidders felt the annual amount demanded by the government was too high.