Healthcare in Barak Valley needs a revamp

Silchar, the small town in the southern part of Assam is a well diverse place in terms of not only people but also of diseases.

Common diseases on the rise

Unlike the pace of growth of the city, cosmopolitan diseases like heart attack, diabetes, hypertension, stroke etc. are on the rise because of the unhealthy life style people are living. People are dying of strokes, heart attacks which can be saved because we don’t have Neurosurgeon or Cardiothoracic surgeons.

Reason behind the rise

People are highly competitive, consume junk foods and most of them are reluctant to do exercises which is an important duty to be healthy. Head and neck cancers have become indigenous to the area because of the heavy consumption of tobacco and betel quid which are culturally acceptable.

Challenges

SMC SilcharWith the increase of diseases reported, the medical facilities have increased in the town but not up to the mark. The medical facilities are not on par with those of the bigger towns or cities. Number of doctors has increased many folds in years but specialists and super specialists are still few in the region. There are very few highly trained doctors or super specialists which are need of the hour in the whole world. Super specialists and specialist doctors most often leave the town at the early stage because of the stagnancy of the development of the region, people are reluctant to bring changes in their lives most importantly. They do not want to stay after so much of hard work they have done in their lives as a medical student they not only move out, most do not want to come too even if you pay them good salaries, because of all the challenges such as transport and communication.

The challenge is lots of money are invested to bring minute medical facilities, and for these you need well trained human resources that is specialized Doctors. Some of the hospitals are reluctant to bring such facilities because they will have great loss if the doctors or the well trained personalities leave the organization.

Which Hospital has better facilities for the common man ?

Silchar Medical College is the only public medical hospital which has got some facilities that caters to the need of the poor or middle class society of the town and the region. But it still lacks important facilities like Neurosurgery department, Neurology department, Urology department, cardiothoracic surgery department etc.  People suffering diseases related to these departments which are huge in numbers either have to go out of the town for medical treatment or succumb to them. The medical college haven’t developed much with the pace of time, partly because of the neglect of the state government, college administrators and more because of the silence of the public. Few private hospitals have come up in the town are really doing well in terms of profits but in terms of facilities, they have a long way to go to be considered a good hospital.

How to overcome the challenges ?

To bring improvement in the health scenario of the town, one must develop the town, improve connectivity with the rest of the country by means of air, train and road. The medical college should be upgraded and efforts must be given to encourage the local upcoming young doctors to do specialisation, super specialisation because in the end they are the only ones who might stay back serving their own people or bring world class medical facilities to the place. Last but not the least, health awareness through campaigns, media must be increased if one wants to prevent diseases from grass root level.

I will give you a good example:

There were no CT Scans in the town but when Dr. P. Saha the only Neurologist decided to stay in the Valley Hospital, the hospital authorities brought it. Now, people don’t need to go out of the town for CT Scan. As of today there might be 4-5 Hospitals with CT Scan facilities as per the sources.

Please do share your thoughts and views and let’s create better life for everyone.

Dr. Yousuf Choudhury

Otolaryngology resident, Silchar Medical College. Worked previously at Jalalpur BPHC under NRHM, Assam and at NEIGRIHMS, Shillong. Believes in revolutionizing rather complaining. Contact me at fb.com/yousuf.f.choudhury or e-mail me at yousuffchoudhury@live.com

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