The decision was taken after Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who is also in charge of the health department, in a recent meeting had directed the senior health officials to make the grievance redressal mechanism of patients more effective to ensure better health services to patients visiting the district, sub-divisional hospitals and the health centres. In the meeting, Banerjee had laid great stress on the improving the quality and range of the healthcare services. All the senior health officials and medical superintendents were asked to extend healthcare services to the patients with the more humane approach.
The primary object of the state health department behind introducing the new system was to minimise the incidents of patients’ transfer to the city’s medical colleges and hospitals from the districts. Senior health department officials believe that the proposed system will decrease the incidents of patients’ referral and also fix the responsibility of doctors and medical staff in the hospitals.
A quality management team will be set up in the district level which will monitor the feedback of the patients. To do this, there will be a quality manager in all the state-run hospitals starting from the sub-divisional hospitals in the districts up to the medical college level. Patients visiting the outpatient departments (OPD) or indoor departments or their patients will be given a form where they will give a detailed account of their experience in the hospital. They will have to furnish the details on how long the patients had to wait at the OPD or in indoor departments to consult a doctor. The patients will also be given an option to mention whether they were satisfied with the overall performance of the doctors and the hospital staff members. The district quality management committee will file a report to the health department officials on the basis of its observations.
There were many instances in which patients had fallen victims of negligence in the district hospitals and also medical colleges across the state. Even the students could not raise the matter with the health department officials as the patients’ redressal mechanism would not properly function. Senior health officials believe that once the new system gets introduced, patients’ grievances could be addressed. The department can also keep a tab on the doctors and the other staff members as how they were behaving with the patients.
It may mentioned, that after coming to power in 2011, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had taken a host of projects to revamp the health infrastructure in the state run hospitals. A great deal of work has been done to ensure health care facilities for the new born and children. Now, the state government is also trying to fix the responsibilities of the doctors and nurses.