‘Health workers overwhelmed and worn out’: DH&FW officials 

Officials shares challenges faced by the dept during ongoing crisis


Morung Express News
Kohima | June 2

The Department of Health and Family Welfare (H&FW) today said a shortage of workforce is one of the biggest challenges it is currently confronting amidst the ongoing fight against COVID-19. 

This was informed during an impromptu press conference today by the H&FW Minister, S Pangnyu Phom and officials from the Department at the BJP state office, Kohima, where they updated media persons on the challenges faced by the department.

Due to shortages, the Department maintained that many of  the health workers are being overwhelmed and worn out.

 "Before COVID-19 incidence, we had shortage of manpower even in the Health department. But even with all those stress, our people are carrying out their duties for COVID-19,” said Dr Kevichüsa Medikhru, NHM Mission Director.

“And besides the pandemic they have to carry out other essential services. You cannot ignore immunization; you cannot ignore ante natal checkups. You cannot ignore any critical cancer cases. These are the challenges that our people are facing with the shortage of manpower," he added. 

Recruitment of nurses is another issue confronting the Department.

Pointing out that the Department is recruiting in queue system, he noted: “Our department is going through the issue of how to go about it. We are bringing in 2002-2003 nurses but over the years, that is almost 18 years now. Our nurses are passing out in batches and they are also requesting for giving them a chance because they are well trained nurses. But we also have the problem of nurses who have gone 15 years without service.”

While the government has created more workforces which the Department appreciated, the official stated that it would continue to face shortages. 

Meanwhile, H&FW Minister Pangnyu acknowledged that the Tuensang episode was very “unfortunate,” and maintained that it was a joint responsibility and not just the Department alone. Transporting the returnees - receiving and sending them off, he said, is not only the Department's responsibility.  “It was a joint responsibility of all the committees set up by the government,” he added.