Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma distributing engagement letter to a nurse at GMCH Auditorium in Guwahati on Friday Credit: EastMojo image

Guwahati: The Assam health ministry distributed engagement letters to 400 surveillance workers who were sacked under the previous government and 728 staff nurses under the National Health Mission (NHM) at GMCH Auditorium in Guwahati on Friday.

Interacting with reporters after distribution of the ceremony, Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that 400 surveillance workers in the health department had to leave work because of non-payment of salary by the previous government. “Today, through the state government’s fund we have again employed the 400 youths after a period of four years,” he said.

Sarma, who was also the health minister under the previous government when they were sacked, highlighted that many of the appointees would take their jobs for granted and waste their day outside his office for seeking transfers.

He said that if you are doing a job just for the income, then there are several other departments to work in, but jobs in the health department need devotion.

Congratulating the recruits, minister of state for health and family welfare Pijush Hazarika too urged them to work wherever they are posted, without asking for transfers.

Also, soon, advertisements will be taken out for recruiting 400 regular nurses at GMCH.

Further, minister Sarma revealed that till 2025, several medical colleges will be established across the state.

Providing data of state’s achievement after the BJP government was formed in 2016, Sarma wrote on Twitter: “In May 2016 when our Govt was formed, there was a huge gap in health care facilities as per IPHS norms. There was a gap of 3977 Allopathic Doctors & 3955 Staff Nurses. Since May 2016, we’ve engaged 9389 healthcare service providers, out of which 1128 have been included today.”

He added that it has resulted in significant improvement in healthcare delivery. For instance, Assam recorded increase in institutional delivery from 22.4% (2005-06) to 70.6% (2015-16) and further to 91% in 2019-20 as per Heath Management Information System (HMIS).

Further, Assam’s Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR) has decreased to 229 (2015-17) from 480 (2004-06). Sarma said, “Our aim is to eliminate malaria by 2022, while controlling the spread of Japanese encephalitis in Assam.”

Several dignitaries were present at the engagement letter distribution ceremony including Samir K Sinha, principal secretary, health and family welfare; Dr Rathindra Bhuyan, director of health services; Dr Anup Barman, director of medical education, Dr Ramen Talukdar, superintendent, GMCH; Dr Ratna Talukdar, principal GMCH and Dr AC Baishya, executive director, NHM, Assam.

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