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Medical Superintendents to Have 'Emergency Purchase Power' in Delhi

This decision, taken during a review meeting on Wednesday chaired by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, aims to cut down the red tape during crises.

Uday Singh Rana | News18.com

Updated:August 16, 2017, 7:38 PM IST
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Medical Superintendents to Have 'Emergency Purchase Power' in Delhi
A patient awaits routine check-up as he sits under a mosquito net inside a dengue ward of a government hospital in New Delhi. (representative image) (REUTERS/Anindito Mukherjee)
New Delhi: Medical Superintendents (MS) in Delhi Government Hospitals will now have “emergency purchase powers”. This means that in the event of a crisis, the MS will have the power to purchase material worth Rs. 1 crore without a prior permission from the state government.

This decision, taken during a review meeting on Wednesday chaired by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, aims to cut down the red tape during crises.

Kejriwal had called a meeting of all Medical Superintendents in Delhi Government hospitals in the wake of the Gorakhpur tragedy earlier this month, which claimed the lives of over 60 children after a reported shortage of oxygen tanks. The Delhi Government also announced a helpline number for patients.

“Today, the CM chaired a review meeting of all Delhi Government hospitals. The Medical Superintendents were called. The availability of medicine in Delhi government hospitals is 90%-95% and we will meet the shortfall in a month or so. We will also launch a helpline for patients. We have given Medical Superintendents greater power to handle a crisis. Earlier, the MS of a small hospital had emergency purchase power of Rs. 10,000 and the MS of a big hospital had purchase power of Rs. 5 lakh. We have increased this to Rs. 1 crore. They can now buy equipment worth Rs. 1 crore without approval from the government,” Satyendra Jain, Delhi health minister, who was part of the meeting, said.

He added, “The emergency wards of all hospitals are working fine. As far as payment to vendors is concerned, the stipulated time is that vendors be paid for their services within 45 days. The average time that most hospitals take is 30 days. However, we noticed that in some cases the payment has been delayed to as much as 60 days. The MSs have assured us that this will not happen again and all payments will be made within 30 days.”

When asked about the Gorakhpur tragedy, Jain said, “We promise you that Gorakhpur will not be repeated in Delhi. We do continuous checks here and ensure that supply is well-stocked. Even non-payment to vendors, which was the case in Gorakhpur, is not an issue in Delhi.”

| Edited by: Mirza Arif Beg
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