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Himachal’s Medical Fraternity Comes Down Heavily on State Govt Over Mindless Adoption of AIIMs Model to End Quarantine Period for Health Workers

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Himachal PRadesh medical officers association

Shimla-The Himachal Medical Officers Association (HMOA) has come down heavily upon the HP Government’s decision to end the quarantine period for healthcare workers rendering their services for Covid-19 prevention and care. The decisions was taken entirely based on the model AIIMs, Delhi is following. The Association has termed it as an “insensitive decision” that has been taken without considering the ground reality of the health system in the state. HMOA has advised the HP government to refrain from adopting models and policies that are being implemented in bigger cities of the country.

The medical fraternity along with all resident doctors of the medical colleges in Himachal have opposed this notification. The Association has given the state government three days to withdraw the notification, otherwise, all doctors would work sporting black ribbons to register their protest.

In a notification issued on May 11, 2021, the HP National Health Mission had said, “Keeping in view the fact that the health care workers have already been vaccinated with both the doses of COVID-19 vaccine in the state, the protocol of quarantining of health care workers after rendering the services in COVID areas of the health care facilities is hereby discontinued immediate effect.”

Earlier, the health staff used to undergo a quarantine period of seven days after they had worked in a Covid ward for 10 days. The quarantine period was necessary since they continuously worked in an environment that had a high presence of the virus.

In a scathing statement issued by the General Secretary, HMOA, Pushpinder Verma, the medical fraternity condemned the act of mindlessly implementing decisions of the highly resourceful All India Medical Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Himachal Pradesh.

Putting things into perspective, the Association said that the entire state of Himachal Pradesh has fewer number of serving doctors as compared to those working at AIIMS in Delhi. Hence, the state government has to consider the reality of medical healthcare staff in Himachal and frame policies by taking all professionals working in the field in confidence before taking such decisions.

“The statement of the government that health workers should keep working till they get infected because they have been administered both doses of Covid-19 vaccine is insensitive and against human values,” Verma said.

The government referred to the policy of the AIIMS, Delhi while imposing this order but it did not consider the fact that AIIMS offers several other facilities to its doctors as well. The HMOA asked whether the government had implemented those welfare policies in Himachal Pradesh ever.

“AIIMS provides its doctors and paramedical staff with a residential facility inside the premise of the institute. Will the HP government implement this policy too?”

“At AIIMS, every health worker on Covid-19 duty is serving five days a week in a shift of six hours a day. Thereafter, they are eligible for two vacations,” the Association said.

In its statement, the HMOA pointed out that AIIMS also keeps a dedicated team of doctors and paramedical staff on standby to facilitate the staff on Covid-19 duty.

Talking about vaccination given to healthcare staff, the Association said that health workers have received both doses but their families have not. The associations asked the state government if there is no value in the lives of family members of these corona warriors.

HMOA also pointed out that the rate of fatality is highest among corona warriors and their family members and so far, over 750 doctors and over 1,200 paramedical staff have already sacrificed their lives across the nation while combating the coronavirus pandemic.

The Association also asked the government whether it can take guarantee that health workers would not get infected after receiving two doses of vaccine.
The state government is being asked to reconsider this decision as HMOA requested Chief Minister Jairam Thakur to intervene and withdraw the notification to boost the morale of corona warriors.

Himachal Watcher spoke to some of the members of the association, who pointed out that instead of giving the command to the state’s best health experts, the government is indulging in framing policies by consulting selected officials and bureaucrats who are oblivious to the on-ground reality.

State’s Junior doctors and Post Graduate doctors had been alleging that higher officials or faculty members of the medical colleges are reluctant to undertake Covid-19 duty and avoid visiting the facilities physically. This has increased the burden on the rest of the doctors and students.

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Rs.18 Crore Mandi Shiv Dham Project Tender Allotted for Rs. 36 Crores, Alleges Sudhir Sharma  

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Mandi Shiv Dham Project Tender

Shimla-Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, Jairam Thakur, and Mandi Shivdham project, which he claims to be his dream project, has landed in controversy ahead of the polling for the by-polls scheduled to be held on October 30.

AICC secretary and former minister, Sudhir Sharma, on Saturday released a statement in which he alleged HP Tourism Development Corporation of indulging in corruption in allotment of tender for the Mandi Shivdham development project. He alleged that against the sanctioned limit of Rs. 18 crores, the tender for the development of the first phase of the project was granted to a Mumbai-based company “Generic Engineering Construction & Projects Limited” in February this year.

The project involves structural construction of replicas of 12 Jyotirlings, site development etc., as per the tender.

He also said that the Chief Minister himself holds charge of the Tourism Department.

Sudhir also furnished some documents related to the tender allocation to support his allegations.

He further informed that the tenders were first invited for the first phase between November 24 and 25, 2020. At that time, the estimated cost was mentioned to be Rs. 18 crores. Four companies responded to the invitation and participated in the tendering process. However, by February this year, the tender was allotted to the above-mentioned company for Rs. 36 crores.

Sudhir questioned the state government over doubling the cost and asked the Chief Minister to provide the public with an explanation for this.

“This money belongs to the State and it should be spent on public welfare,” Sudhir said in a statement released on Saturday.

He also demanded action against those involved in this alleged act of corruption.

Sudhir further alleged that instead of taking care and undertaking beautification of already existing temples and religious places in Mandi – also known as Choti Kashi- Chief Minister jumped to a new location with his dream project. He also alleged that the government didn’t even obtain forest clearance for this project and several trees were axed.

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Kinnaur: Horrific Tragedy Unfolds as Bodies of 7 Out of 11 Missing Trekkers Recovered, Two Still Missing

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Kinnaur-A horrific tragedy is unfolding as bodies of seven trekkers, who had gone missing while trekking from Uttarkashi to Chitkul, were recovered by the teams of Army and ITPB from Lamkhaga Pass in Kinnaur district. Two of them have been rescued alive and were receiving medical treatment. Two trekkers are still missing and feared to be dead.

Most of these persons belonged to West Bengal. 

The rescue team could not lift the bodies due to the bad weather on Thursday as it had to suspend the search and rescue operation. The operation was resumed on Friday. The search operation for the remaining missing persons would be carried out on Saturday. The search and rescue teams found the bodies at an altitude of 5,000 metres.

According to the available information, a total of 17 persons – 11 trekkers and six porters- had left Uttarkashi on October 11 on a trekking expedition that was supposed to conclude in Chikul of Kinnaur district on October 19. However, the weather took a drastic turn and the region witnessed heavy snowfall on October 17 and 18.

While six Nepalese porters were said to have reached Chitkul, the trekkers had decided to stay in temporary tents at Lamkhaga Pass. The porters had informed the police about the stranded trekkers on reaching Chitkul on October 20.

The Deputy Commissioner, Kinnaur, Abid Hussain, confirmed that nine of these trekkers have been found. While two were alive, seven had died. The exact reason for deaths would be ascertained only after the post-mortem. Two trekkers still remain missing. More information is awaited.

It’s pertinent to mention that the Meteorological Department had issued warning of heavy rain and snow on October 18 alonwith an orange alert. 

Following are the details of the bodies recovered and persons rescued alive:

Deceased Persons

  1. Anita Rawat (38) D/o Sh. Jyoti Singh R/o M 95 Harinagar, West Bengal
  2. Tanmay Tiwari (30), S/o Sh R.C. Tiwari, R/o Kishan Nagar, Kolkata 3
  3. Vikas Makal(33) son of Swapan Maikal, Raghabpur Nepalganj, South 24 Parganas, West Bengal
  4. Saurabh Gosh (34) S/o Sushil Ghosh, R/o Nepalganj, South 24 West Bengal
  5. Subhayan Das (28) S/o Kajal Das, R/o 10/1A Nepal Bhatacharia G Streak Kalighat, West Bengal
  6. Richard Mandal (31) From West Bengal
  7. Upender (22) from Uttarkashi

Detail of Missing persons:

  1. Sukenh Manjhi(43) From West Bengal
  2. Gyan Chand (33) from Uttarkashi

Details of Injured Person

  1. Devendra Chauhan, S/o Hariram, R/o Village Gangad, Thana Mary, Uttarkashi. (company guide)
  2. Mithun Dari, S/o Swar Badal Ch Dari, R/o Prasadpur, PostAndhar Manik, South 24 Pargans, West Bengal

 

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HP By-Polls 2021: Silence Period Extended to Three Days

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Shimla-The campaigning period during Himachal Pradesh by-elections has been fixed from 10 am to 7 pm every day. The silence period has been extended from two days to three days before the closing date of voting, which will start after 6 pm on 27th October 2021.

During the no active campaigning by the candidates or political parties is allowed, and television or any digital media cannot carry any election-related matter.

This information was released by Chief Electoral Officer, Himachal Pradesh, C. Paulrasu. He said that the Election Commission of India has limited the period of campaigning during by-election 2021 in view of the guidelines issued for the prevention of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He has urged all the candidates and political parties participating in the by-elections of Mandi Parliamentary Constituency and Fatehpur, Jubbal-Kotkhai and Arki Assembly Constituencies to comply with these guidelines related to the election campaign.

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