AIIMS director MC Mishra, who participated in the ongoing workshop of Society of Endoscopic and Laparoscopic Surgeons of India in the city, spoke about medical services in Punjab. Here are the excerpts:
Do you think Punjab has sufficient medical infrastructure for people?
Punjab has made significant improvement in providing better medical services to its people and is expanding its base gradually in this direction. The state is putting in specific efforts by running more and more drug de-addiction centres all across the state with adequate and efficient medical expertise. The areas of traumatic, cardiovascular, cancer and diabetic diseases have also seen significant improvement in both private and government sector in the state, but there always remain a scope for improvement in this field and a lot needs to be done.
Has AIIMS any plan for underprivileged who can’t afford private medical services?
We have not planned anything as of now but there are already a number of schemes being run by the Central and state government such as BPL card scheme and there are Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana among others. People should be made aware about such schemes.
How to discourage the practice of government employed medics running private clinics?
The vigilance and medical councils have to swing into action. The defaulters should be probed and penalised. There are states who allow government doctors to go for private practice but a line needs to be drawn. The doctors should act honestly.
Region still battles with cancer. Does AIIMS plan to work to bring the situation under control?
Research on cancer is ongoing as usual with no specific plans as of now. Prevention plays a pivotal role in case of cancer. Leading a healthy lifestyle is very important with proper diet that includes fruits, veggies and regular exercise.
Your comments on recent medical negligence due to which five infants died in one day during pregnancy failures.
An individual shouldn’t be held responsible for absolute system failure. It depends upon government that good infrastructure including trained staff and funds are provided for improvement of services. A doctor or a nurse is just a part of the chain which functions within the system so one can’t be blamed for any failure. In medical establishments abroad, as a remedial measure, emphasis is given on adequate compensation and an inquiry is marked into such incidents to ensure no mistake is repeated.
Over 60 persons lost their sight in a camp held by an NGO. Do you justify such camps? What should be done to prevent such incidents from happening?
Medical camps by NGOs shouldn’t be banned. The organisations can seek guidance from authorised medical experts. Breach of medical protocol shouldn’t be tolerated. Quality of service must be kept in mind while holding such camps. The patients should be provided good environment in the medical camps.