Considering some of the unique conditions of Telangana State, it is of the utmost importance to revitalize the government health care system by providing adequate medical and health facilities. Ultimately, in the long run, only technology-based healthcare would be able to meet people’s medical and health needs.
In Telangana, as in other parts of the country, specialized and super-specialized health care is available mainly in the private sector and partly in the public sector, while all primary care is provided by the government. Another problem in India in general and especially for the middle class is the huge cost of diagnostic services which are provided mainly by private centers. For example, a PET (positron emission tomography) scan costs around Rs. 25,000 and an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) costs around Rs. 15,000 and many more like that. These must be provided by the government at affordable costs. This is now being achieved by the government through the KCT initiative.
In this context, a massive action-oriented plan designed and launched in the medical and health sector by CM KCR deserves special mention. From the day he took office, KCR had placed public health at the top of the government agenda of his state. As usual, he studies the subject in depth before defining, designing, developing, delivering and then implementing a program.
Realizing that people have a very low opinion of public hospitals, and that many songs ridiculing the sordid state of public hospitals and the medical treatment available have become very popular among the masses under the unified PA regime, KCR stood up for it. launched in the reorganization of public primary school hospitals. From health centers (CSP) to tertiary care hospitals. He started to allocate more funds for public health.
Sufficient funds are allocated to improve basic infrastructure in public hospitals, from beds, medicines and instruments to bed linen. He asked the officials concerned to place their bulk orders for sheets, bedspreads, pillow cases, curtains and other fabrics from the looms sector. He filled all vacant positions in the Department of Medicine and Health.
KCR introduced what is commonly referred to as KCR kits. Under the program, every pregnant woman receives financial assistance both during the prenatal and postnatal period. She also receives a kit containing clothes, quality baby soaps, baby oil, baby powder, mosquito nets, toys, towels and diapers. She also receives Rs 12,000 during the period for lost wages for taking vacation. The woman receives an additional 1000 Rs if she is lucky enough to have a baby girl. A free ambulance service under the Amma Vodi program is provided to her to take her from her home to the hospital and then back home with the baby. This program has increased institutional deliveries to public hospitals by leaps and bounds.
With the CM KCR initiative, massive eye camps have been organized across the state known as Kanti Velugu, where everyone in the state receives free eye tests, glasses and medication. For people who need additional treatment, they are referred to specialized hospitals in Hyderabad for free treatment. Kanti Velugu was made on a large scale and Infact should find its place in the world record books. Now the health profile is being adopted.
KCR had introduced Basti Dawakhanas to Hyderabad, which became very popular and he had to extend them to other municipal corporations, municipalities at the request of the public. Now there is a demand for the Basti Dawakhanas model from rural areas.
When the corona pandemic erupted across the country, he instilled confidence in the people and explained to them the need to follow certain procedures in their personal and public life. He repeatedly told them the need for nutritious food, vitamin C intake through fruit consumption, a hygienic lifestyle, etc. If necessary, he imposed blockages and relaxed them when necessary.
When the pandemic was at its peak, the Telangana Institute of Medical Sciences (TIMS) in Gachibowli in a sprawling campus was established. Gandhi Hospital has been notified as a Covid Hospital. In wave two, given that a majority of people with Covid can be treated at home in isolation, CM KCR launched a two-pronged strategy of investigating the fever and distributing medical kits corona to the needy. He also called on authorities to step up Covid testing to limit the spread of the Corona virus in the state. It has also increased the number of rapid antigen test kits and in all medical centers.
As a result of reports of the spread of the black fungus disease, for its treatment, special beds were created and the necessary drugs were made available in the state. The process of recruiting doctors and other medical personnel was carried out on a warlike basis. Several existing medical schools have been approved to establish nursing schools, and seven other medical schools and nursing schools have been sanctioned in the state. All public hospital beds have been converted to oxygen beds, and oxygen production in the state has increased to 600 tonnes per day.
The government took care of its young doctors and their problems were all solved. The CM has increased the fees paid to senior residents by 15 percent. The CM has also extended the fees for senior residents to medical students who are engaged in Covid duties after their three years of medical school. Better medical facilities are provided to young doctors and their families at NIMS.
CM has observed that medical treatment is becoming more and more expensive and the cost of diagnostic tests has become more than the cost of the disease. Tests for the heart, liver, kidneys, lungs, cancer, thyroid, etc. have become a necessity for the poor. People are forced to go to private clinics, spend thousands of rupees and get tested. It has become a heavy financial burden for the poor.
KCR recently launched diagnostic centers in 19 identified district headquarters in the state and in major public hospitals. This is a landmark decision in the history of the state’s medical and health sector. In phases, these will be implemented in the remaining districts. Free diagnostic centers are launched in the public sector, as the CM has realized that patients spend more on tests than on treatment. About 57 tests are carried out in the centers. Very expensive equipment at the cutting edge of technology; modern technology is installed in the centers. The required number of pathologists, microbiologists, radiologists is displayed in these centers.
For emergency services, the government manages 428 ambulances under 108 services. 300 vehicles are already in service for pregnant women under the Amma Vadi program, where pregnant women are transported free of charge to hospitals and back home after childbirth. 100-bed hospitals in Satthupalli and Madhira will soon be set up and Warangal Central Prison is now relocated and in its place a super-specialized mother and child care center would be established.
CM KCR had allocated a huge crore of Rs 10,000 more to medical and health departments other than the funds allocated in the budget. A healthy Telangana is emerging with Bangaru Telangana thanks to the initiatives of CM KCR.