Sunday, March 3, 2024

Thappa wants NEIGRIHMS to be free of corruption


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SHILLONG: NEIGRIHMS Director DM Thappa said that there should be a corruption free NEIGIRHMS and he will strive to achieve this.
In a statement issued on Saturday with a title ‘True Inside Story by the Director, Thappa, who has been embroiled in controversy, said, “It appears some officials in MoHFW are trying to run a parallel administration through Deputy Director (Admn.) by-passing Director. Main question is “What is in the interest of public a corruption free NEIGRIHMS or corruption ridden NEIGRIHMS”.
Even if we do not take into account the failures of earlier administration to establish standard operating procedures (SOPs) for procurement for major consumables, it is relevant to note that all attempts to establish SOPs for procurements like stents, pacemakers, grafts and implants have been resisted by the user department.”
Thappa has asserted that he is the victim of expose of nexus between a private vendor and HoD Cardiology, busted on April, 2019 when items (stents and pacemakers) worth Rs. 30 lakh were confiscated by Vigilance Officer.
He said that the HoD Cardiology along with his DM students took the system for a ride and stopped working for days together at the cost of patient’s lives, so as to get the confiscated items released.
“Now AMRIT pharmacy has become primary supplier of the same after May 3, 2019. Who is getting benefitted? Director or the patients? Why the same initiative was resisted by HOD cardiology before May, 2019? The answer everybody knows. How many patients have been infected with HIV, Hepatitis B and C by reuse of one time disposable catheters, sheaths, balloons, and guide wire etc in the Cath lab for cardiac procedures in Cardiology Department. Moreover these patients were billed as if new items have been used,” he said.
Criticising the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), Thappa said that it is true that NEIGRIHMS is not ‘Institute of National Importance’ as per recent communication from MoHFW in relation to seeking pay parity with AIIMS, New Delhi in 2018 and 2019.
But as per gazette notification in 2008, NEIGRIHMS is the only medical institute to be declared as ‘Centre of Excellence’.
However, no additional benefits are being given as a result of this.
He said while MoHFW is trying to blame the present Director for lack of progress in the Institute under his stewardship but facts prove/demonstrate otherwise. Some officials in the Ministry are misguided by the same lobby who does not want Director to interfere in their multi-crore business.
While clarifying allegations, he said, “As claimed before, Director has never issued any circular for stopping non-vegetarian food in all eateries in NEIGRIHMS. Please ask the concerned person to release that circular in the press,” he said.
He also said that occasional checks need to be done to remove anomalies and to provide affordable healthcare to the public, checkmate the malpractice or corruption in the hospital. Protocols for counseling need to be developed. Personal opinion cannot be thrust on poor patients. Patients’ complaints need to be taken note of and investigated in full. The department concerned should help in the conduct of vigilance enquiries.
“Government enlisted pharmacies such as AMRIT pharmacy to be promoted as per MoHFW advisory in the interest of people of North East. If it would have been followed, the event of seizure of stents and pacemakers from Sanjo pharmacy to the tune of Rs. 30 lakh would not have happened. In this vigilance awareness week, what message we want to give to the public. Don’t pay bribe to the hospital staff. “Whistle blower needs to be protected”, whether he is a common man or director of an institute. Let the patient’s faith on the doctor in this “temple of healing” is not shaken off. NEIGRIHMS needs to be cleaned from unethical practices by few, who are maligning the image of the institute for their personal gains,” Thappa said.


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