With an increasing number of health issues crippling the Mumbai police, especially the constabulary, the administration now plans to propose mandatory health check-ups for policemen of all ranks at least once a year.
“This is being done to keep the force fit and alert,” said Hemant Nagrale, joint commissioner of police (administration).
Nagrale said that in the absence of mandatory checkups, policemen tend to neglect their health. “This will not just help them undergo compulsory check-ups, but also help in the early diagnosis of ailments, if any,” he added.
Recent studies have revealed that over 50% of the force suffers from high blood pressure, heart, kidney and liver ailments, diabetes and psychological problems too. This often results from odd duty hours, stress, bad eating habits and the lack of exercise. This has taken a toll on the efficiency of the force, forcing the state home department launch the Maharashtra Police Kutumbh Aarogya Yojna (MPKAY) in 2005-06 (see box).
Nagrale also said, 27 private hospitals which have been empanelled under the MPKAY, would be approached to provide the health check-up to policemen free of cost.
“If they do not agree to do it for free, matters can be taken up with the department,” he added. These hospitals will also be approached to provide the out-patient department facility for the policemen.
The police administration has also realised that the coverage of these hospitals is not adequate in regard to the geographical limits of the city. Hence efforts are on to include a greater number of private hospitals under the ambit of the scheme. “As per plans, we will have at least five empanelled hospitals in each police region.”
There are five such regions are located within the brihanmumbai limits.