The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Surjya stick for ‘shirker’ staff

Siliguri, Nov. 17: Health minister Surjya Kanta Mishra has ticked off the North Bengal Medical College and Hospital authorities for lack of discipline, hammering in the point that there is no room for those who shirked responsibility at the premier referral hospital in the region.

The minister, who visited the hospital yesterday, called for a “concerted effort” on part of the staff to improve the working condition. He directed the employees to pull up their socks and provide better services. “We have no room for shirkers,” Mishra said.

What “disappointed” the minister was the “absence of an overall sense of discipline among the staff”. Senior officials have been instructed to streamline the administrative functions, maintain attendance registers, start intra-departmental assessment and issue identity cards to hospital employees. The staff should be pulled up if they are found playing truant, he added.

Mishra also inquired about the delay in construction of the new cardiology, nephrology and urology departments and ordered the officials to improve the quality of food served to patients.

Mishra’s tough talk comes in the wake of the government’s decision to set up a separate health directorate in north Bengal.

Mishra said doctors should shoulder additional responsibility and improve their relations with patients, who have recently complained about harassment at the hands of the hospital staff. Particular attention must be paid to tap the resources of the Group-D employees, he added.

The minister has asked the hospital authorities to end the “tussle” between the medical college and the North Bengal Dental College over the construction of a new campus. The hospital has allotted 5 acres to the dental college to build its own campus. At present, it operates out of the medical college’s radiotherapy unit.

According to medical college sources, Mishra had singled out certain departments and spoke to the respective heads about the “quality of education” imparted by the college. Hospital superintendent Subir Banerjee said: “We are carrying out specific plans to improve the overall standard of the medical college. Efforts are on to initiate stern action against the erring staff.”

A senior doctor said they are waiting for “final orders” before introducing MD and MS courses in anatomy, physiology, pathology, community medicine, paediatrics, gynaecology and anaesthetics.

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