Under‘cover’ SDM exposes neglect at Firozabad health centre - Hindustan Times

Under‘cover’ SDM exposes neglect at Firozabad health centre

Mar 12, 2024 10:11 PM IST

Firozabad SDM's 'veiled' visit to a health centre reveals doctor's apathy, expired medicines, and absentee staff. Report to higher authorities planned.

A sub-divisional magistrate’s (SDM) ‘veiled’ visit to a government health centre in Firozabad on Tuesday has exposed the apathy of doctors and other staff working there.

SDM Krati Raj visits Dida Mai Health Center in Firozabad in a veil on Tuesday. (HT)
SDM Krati Raj visits Dida Mai Health Center in Firozabad in a veil on Tuesday. (HT)

Firozabad SDM (Sadar) Krati Raj, an IAS officer of the 2021 batch, said she had received a complaint regarding inconveniences faced by patients, mainly those looking to get vaccinated against rabies, at Dida Mai health centre in Firozabad.

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“The complainant stated that a doctor at the Dida Mai health centre in Firozabad was usually unavailable even after 10 am, and that victims of dog bites were feeling harassed. So I chose to visit the hospital in a veil,” the SDM said.

“When the doctor came, he was rude to patients. Later, I inspected the medicine stock and found that half of it had expired. Cleanliness was not up to the mark and staff administering injections were not working properly. Many staff marked present were, in fact, absent,” the IAS officer said, adding, “I will submit a report to higher authorities.”

After completing her training, Krati, who hails from Jhansi, joined in her current posting three months ago.

When asked about her out-of-the-box approach, she said she found it to be an effective way when dealing with such complaints.

“It is not that I wanted to do something in a special way. What I did was in an official capacity and in the line of duty,” added Krati.

To disguise herself as a patient, she even made a slip for herself at the health centre and interacted with women patients there with her veil on. Her identity was revealed only when she disclosed it before she began inspecting the medicine stock.

“...We (government officials) are here to serve the masses, but at the health centre there was no spirit to serve visible,” added Krati.

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    Hemendra Chaturvedi is based in Agra serving as a Principal Correspondent, covering districts of Agra and Aligarh division of western Uttar Pradesh. He has been with HT since 1992 and has completed 25 year of association with HT.

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