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Thursday , 15 November 2018
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How Kolkata’s healthcare system is changing with a shift in focus

Healthcare is a contentious issue in India, especially in a city like Kolkata with its high population density. Lack of infrastructure, unpredictable costs, inefficiency are some of the diseases ailing the healthcare in Kolkata.

Cases for medical negligence, expired medicines and fake doctor rackets are making the headlines almost every day. There is a huge gap between the demand and supply offered by the government. If not for private healthcare providers like AMRI Hospital Kolkata, the situation could have been even worse.

According to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO), only one in five doctors in rural India is qualified to practice medicine. There is one government doctor for every 10,189 people, one government hospital bed for every 2,046 people and one state-run hospital for every 90,343 people.

However, there is a ray of hope for the people of Kolkata. Recently, the state government has taken a few steps to overcome the healthcare problem. They have come up with a proposed healthcare Bill that will make all the private healthcare providers accountable. Apart from this, the law will review costs related to ICU, ventilation, implants, surgeries, etc. The law intends to make positive changes to the healthcare sector, making it more accessible and affordable.

There will be no room for self-styled doctors. There will also be a better assessment of quackery by state and district, and a better enforcement to ensure they don’t indulge in high-risk practices, such as use of injections and IV fluids.

Not only government, but some the private hospitals have started to tighten the screws when it comes to providing efficient healthcare services. AMRI hospitals in Kolkata are providing good healthcare facilities at Dhakuria, Mukundapur and Salt Lake. They also have one super specialty hospital in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. All these hospitals are conducting 15,000 surgeries annually, with a roster of more than 5,000 healthcare professionals.

There are over 1,000 beds across the four AMRI hospitals, backed by advanced technologies and latest equipment. The group treats more than 3.5 lakh people every year, taking up the challenge of treating the most complicated cases. Over the last few years, it has made an immense contribution to the lives of people.

Although there are still a number of problems like shortage of healthcare providers, doctors, mismanagement and inadequate resources, the recent developments are surely changing the trend. It was common to hear people leaving Kolkata for Vellore, Chennai, Mumbai or other parts of India to get their serious ailments treated, but not anymore. 

There has been a progress in all aspects of healthcare delivery due to investment in technology. The combined efforts of government and private hospitals like AMRI hospitals have changed the landscape of healthcare in Kolkata.

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