JAMMU: With liabilities of crores of rupees, the cardiac devices manufacturing companies have stopped the supply of Cath Lab devices like stunts and pacemakers to the Jammu Government Medical College (GMC) due to which over 40 cardio patients, who could not afford to pay hefty amount for surgeries, are waiting for funds to be released.Under Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PM-JAY) Sehat Scheme, Ayushman Bharat card holders are provided free Cath Lab devices. Those who have paid for such items are undergoing surgeries at the Super Specialty Hospital (SSH) of GMC Jammu while the others are in wait from the past one week.The Centre has all along been assuring that there is no scarcity of funds under this SEHAT scheme. However, the problems arise in Jammu and Kashmir due to unknown reasons.
According to insiders, the GMC management has diverted the funds, meant for the purchase of Cardio Cath Lab devices like stunts and pacemakers.Representatives of all the international and national brands have jointly written a letter to all the premier government health institutes in Jammu and Kashmir, stating that the supply of the stocks is made on the consignment basis and the bills are raised only after the products are consumed.“Earlier, when Cath Lab Sales counter was managed by the Government hospitals staff itself, we used to receive the payments by first week of every month for all the products consumed in the previous month but the counter was taken over by AMRIT Pharmacy, we were assured that payments will be made within one month,” the letter mentions.The letter states that even the bills pertaining to financial year 2019–2020 are still pending.The Director Finance, Health and Medical Education has written to Principal GMC, Jammu to settle the pending cases of claims strictly as per the guidelines of Ayushman Bharat in consultation with CEO concerned. “This department has no objection in utilisation of funds released under head–081 Drugs and instruments during 2020-2021 provided the commitments/purpose for which the said funds have been projected in the budget are fulfilled and unnecessary liability is not created for the next financial year”, the letter mentions, adding that all the codal formalities should be adhered to while utilising the funds.However, the GMC Jammu has refused to divert funds, reliable sources informed, resulting in delay in conducting surgeries at Cardio Cath Lab.Financial Commissioner Health and Medical Education Department Atal Dulloo expressed his ignorance about all this when the issue was brought to his notice. He, however, assured that the matter will be looked into earnestly.“Government is openly organsing camps for the enrollment of citizens under this scheme. Even door to door campaigns are being organised. Is this all for the image building of the BJP?” lamented Rajesh Kumar, a resident of Pouni waiting for his father’s surgery in the Cardio Ward of SSH, Jammu.“If we are not provided with the facility at the right time, what is the fun of this medical assistance,” said Surinder Kour from Poonch, waiting for her husband’s heart surgery.Dr Sushil Sharma, HoD, Cardiology SSH said, “We are unable to solve the problems of these poor people. We are conducting surgery of those who can afford to buy stunts and pacemakers. Those covered under Ayushmaan Bharat scheme are kept in wait as there are no cardio devices in our stocks”.
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