My aim is to reach rural areas and make a difference to healthcare of tribals
Bonai: Patients at S Balang CHC under Bonai sub-division in Sundargarh district are enjoying a double bonanza as the newly-appointed Sub-Collector Yeddula Vijay also has a medical degree.
Since his appointment, Vijay has endeavoured to develop the healthcare sector in this economically backward, tribal-dominated region. Besides, his administrative job, he regularly visits hospitals and provides healthcare services to patients.
With his hands-on approach, he is making a difference in the Maoist-affected region marred by inadequate health infrastructure and shortage of doctors coupled with administrative apathy.
“We were pleasantly surprised to see the Sub-Collector himself attending to the poor tribals who had been waiting to see a doctor in the CHC. He handles the patients with care and politeness, winning their hearts,” locals said.
For the 2014 batch IAS officer through, it was the call of duty both as an administrator and doctor.
“I did nothing extraordinary. I’m a doctor and I think I can lend a helping hand to serve the patients while I am inspecting the hospitals or health centers. It gives me satisfaction,” said Vijay.
His prime focus has been to strengthening healthcare services and ensuring proper treatment for the needy populace. Within a few days of his appointment as Sub-Collector, Vijay has covered half a dozen healthcare institutions.
Apart from infrastructure and service delivery, being a doctor helps him to check the performance of doctors as in prescribing appropriate drugs and also ensure proper implementation of Niramaya scheme for free medicine to the poor patients.
Usually between 8am and 12 noon every day, Vijay visits government health facilities including Anganwadi centres and returns to his office around 4pm.
The changes in the region’s healthcare system are clearly visible after his appointment, as the attendance of doctors at the government-run health facilities has improved greatly. The hygiene and cleanliness of Bonai SDH has improved significantly, while steps have been taken to create four extra rooms for operation theatres along with purchase of equipment and beds.
The Sub-Collector said he is hopeful of fast-paced improvement in the healthcare sector in this region.