Healthcare facilities (and the problems thereof) is very unique in Andaman and
Nicobar Islands. Unlike the Government Hospital in State governments elsewhere
in the Mainland India, the people in Andaman and Nicobar enjoy totally free
Healthcare facilities from Government hospitals. This free healthcare in
government hospitals includes the following:
1. No payment for Doctor fees
2. No payment for any medication provided from Hospital Pharmacy
3. No payment for any investigations or procedures done in the Government
4. No payment for inpatient Hospitalisations
5. No operation theatre, surgery or anaesthesia payments (if operated upon)
5. No Nursing and administrative payments
6. No payment for food supplied in Hospital(s)
7. No taxes are levied
8. Routine and chronic patients like that of diabetes, hypertension etc.
collects their medication regularly without any payment
9. No ambulance payments
A nominal charge is levied for special wards like Nursing Home and Special Ward
in the tertiary hospital - Govind Vallab Pant Hospital at Port Blair
The list of Government institutions are given below:
|Community Health Centre||4|
|PHC (Primary Health Centre)||19|
|UHC (Urban Health Centre)||5|
|Total Bed strength||1005 (805 Andaman, 200 Nicobar)|
List of staff in the Health Department is given below:
|Doctors (primary care)||73|
GB PANT Hospital (GBPH Port Blair)
GBPH Port Blair is the biggest and the only tertiary referral Hospital in
Andaman and Nicobar.
The 412 bedded GB Pant Hospital is only hospital with specialized services in Surgery,
Orthopaedics, Medicine, Dermatology, Gynaecology, Paediatrics, ENT, Pathology & Ophthalmology etc.
under one roof. The average Out Patient Department (OPD) attendance is about 1100 patients per day. The bed occupancy rate of the hospital is about 80% (the average inpatient number in 2010 was 305).
The hospital is headed by Medical Superintendent who is assisted by Deputy Med. Supdt.
There are 15 sanctioned posts of Specialists in the hospital. The cases not manageable at GB Pant hospital are referred to Hospitals at Chennai.
The expenditure on treatment of serious patients at mainland under BPL (Below poverty line) category is met out of the fund provided by Govt. of India under National Illness Assistance Fund. A few hundreds have benefited of this scheme.
G B Pant Hospital, Port Blair Contact: 03192-32102, 33473
Prime Contacts :
DHS : Dr. Shipra Paul
Medical Superintendent, GBPH : Dr. M.K.Saha
Matron, GBPH : Mrs. Radhamani
The Telemedicine/Teleconsultancy Services
Under the Telemedicine project, Hospitals/health centers in remote
locations are linked via INSAT satellites with super specialty Hospitals at
major towns/cities, bringing in connectivity between patients at remote end with
the Specialist Doctors for medical consultations and treatment. Telemedicine
pilot projects are undertaken by ISRO with the involvement of selected super
specialty hospitals located in major cities and smaller health centers in
distant and rural areas.
Former Prime Minister A. B. Vajpayee inaugurated the telemedicine project on 3rd July 2002 linking the G.B. Pant Hospital Port Blair with Sri Ramachandra Medical College & Research
Institute (SRMC&RI). The Telemedicine facility was intended to enable the
doctors at GBPH Port Blair to directly interact with the Super Specialists and
seek advice or treatment from Chennai/Other locations. The facility provides
live video conferencing and have scanners and equipments to send live data like
that of ECG and X-rays to recipients at the other end. Telemedicine facility is also extended to District Hospital Car Nicobar, and
is planed to be extended to CHC's and PHC's in a phased manner during the next 25 years.
The Reality : There was a lot of hype created for the Telemedicine facility and
people are made to believe that this will cut their burden to travel to
Chennai, though the fact is that the Telemedicine is not much a success story. The reasons may be the following:
1. The Hospitals with which GB Pant is connected are commercial hospitals (Apollo Hospital, SRMC etc.).
There commercial interest therefore cannot tbe negated. Most often the patient in context is anyway migrated to Chennai for further care,
so the telemedicine acts merely as a patient procurement mechanism for these commercial Hospitals.
2. Even if expert guidance is received from the connected Super Specialist(s), The advise received often does not yield practical results due to lack of
advanced infrastructure at GB Pant Hospital
3. One of the biggest point of failure of Telemedicine is time constraint of the Specialist doctors (MD/MS/Diploma) at GB Pant Hospitals.
The Specialists are already overladen with their routine job and they seldom find time to schedule proper calls with Super Specialists of these connected commercial Hospitals.
Note: 3 MD medicines : ~4 lac population, is the equation we are citing for you to understand the existing workload !
Primary Health Centre (s)
Unlike state govt. PHCs (primary health Centre), the PHC's in Andaman & Nicobar
Islands are full fledged hospitals with a staff strength of about 25 staffs in
each which includes Doctor(s), Nurses, ANMs, lab technicians, pharmacists,
X-Ray technician and other support staff. Each PHC has at-least 10-15 beds, Operating theatre(s),
Small Laboratory, X-Ray. Besides these, captive power generator sets, ambulances, refrigerators and deep freezers for maintaining cold chain
for medicines have also been provided in the PHCs as per the norms prescribed by the Government of India.
Community Health Centre (s)
CHC's are bigger health provider units than PHC's. In Andaman & Nicobar Islands
CHC's are mid sized hospitals with a staff strength of more than 35 staffs in
each. Each Community Health Centre has 40-70 beds with more upgraded
infrastructure as compared to PHC's. Blood transfusion
facility is available in addition.
ISM & Homoeopathy
Under the ISM & Homoeopathy Unit, this Union Territory has 8 Homeo- dispensaries
: One each at Port Blair functioning since 1975. Car Nicobar established in 1986, Bambooflat, Mayabunder, Rangat, Diglipur, Nancowry and Campbell Bay from 1997 to 2001 in phased manner. Besides, foundation stone for establishment of a 30-bedded ISM & Homeo Hospital at Port Blair has already been laid on 4th March 2001 by the Hon'ble Union Home Minister Shri L. K. Advani. During 10th Plan it is proposed to establish 10 more Homoeo dispensaries and 4 Ayurvedic dispensaries in consonance with the guidelines of GOI to integrate the ISM & Homoeopathy with Primary Health Care. The first Ayurvedic dispensary of the UT was made functional at Aberdeen Bazar on 30th November 2001.
Health Facilities In Tribal Area
The majority of the tribal population of the Union Territory is concentrated in the Nicobar District. Although ~9.5% of the total population of this Union territory are tribals, the local administration has infused about 30% of the total health infrastructure in the southern group of islands.
As per government norms the basis of setup of health institutions/Hospitals (PHC, CHC's) should be the population. In A&N Islands however the Government of India has relaxed the norms. As per the relaxed norms Sub-Centres may be established at a distance of 5 KM and PHCs at 10 Km distance irrespective of population