Gangtok, 14 Jan:
Chief Minister PawanChamling inaugurated the 1,000-bed Multi Speciality Hospital at Sochaygang here at Sichey in East Sikkim today. On the occasion, he has also laid the foundation stone of the first State Government Medical College of Sikkim.
Dedicating the hospital to the people of Sikkim, the CM heralded the inauguration as a historic moment and the happiest day for Sikkim and its people, one that will always be remembered in the health sector of the State.
The CM informed that the State government had taken the decision to build this multispecialty hospital in 2009 with the aim to provide world-class medical services to the people of Sikkim within the State.
He further shared that while the dream was there, there were no funds to even start the work. He added that the then bureaucrats believed that it was impossible to build such a multispecialty hospital, but the State government remained firm in its commitment and the foundation stone was laid in 2010.
“Now, I am very satisfied and happy for the people of Sikkim who have the biggest multispecialty government hospital. This is the biggest government hospital in the country after AIIMS in New Delhi. It is an important milestone for Sikkim,” he stressed.
He informed that funds from plan and non-plan budget of the State were used to construct the hospital and a soft loan of Rs 200 cr was taken to buy the required medical equipment.
“We have created a new history by preserving the essence of STNM Hospital. To keep our history, the hospital will be named the New STNM Multispecialty Hospital,” he announced.
He directed that the STNM Hospital be shifted to this new structure and be made fully functional by 01 February.
He informed that the new hospital has been equipped with the latest and most advanced machines and technology.
The hospital has the latest machines for TB detection, advanced machines in radiology, 23 operation theatres, ICU ambulances, healthcare assistants will be available 24X7 etc.
He informed that a free bus service will be plied from Gangtok to the hospital round the clock. He informed that the hospital complex also has a YatriNiwas which has 119 beds and a dining hall for attendants and an auditorium having seating capacity for 300 persons.
While mentioning that the government has not only focused on the curative but also on preventive measures, the CM informed that the government has provided free vaccination for hepatitis-B, MDR and HPV to the people and Sikkim was also the first state to start the free HPV vaccine campaign for cervical cancer.
He pointed out that the CATCH programme of the State government was unique in the country. He further expressed that the State government has been working on mission-mode to make Sikkim a TB-Free State by 2022 and sought everyone’s support for the success of this mission.
The CM mentioned that this hospital was fully digital and has been connected to all district hospitals of the State. He added that the hospital has been equipped with latest equipment and facilities in every department and the people do not need to go outside the State for treatment any more.
The new hospital has already created a lot of employment opportunities for local youth and more than 100 youth of the area have already received jobs in C and D grade in the hospital and 3-4 youth from every constituency will be employed in the hospital.
He added that the hospital has also created immense opportunities for the people of Sichey and the surrounding areas. While mentioning that the area was growing into a medical centre and an educational hub, he urged the people to embrace these opportunities and extend their full support and cooperation to the hospital by working in common interest.
The CM mentioned that the upcoming State Medical College in the area will also promote the area as an educational hub. The Medical College will provide free education to Sikkimese students, he announced.
“We have provided the best medical facilities and services to the people of Sikkim in these 24 years with our unique and exemplary initiatives in the health sector,” he said. On the same, he asserted that if any political party gives irresponsible and wrong statement in health sector, then doctors and medical fraternity should speak up and reach a clear message to the people.
While stating that physical health was not enough, and that the mind also needs to be healthy, the CM urged the hospital staff to work seriously on the field of psychiatry and mental health. On the same, he ruedthat some irresponsible elements have been just accusing the government for suicides but they do not want to go deep on this issue. He also advised the hospital to work on substance abuse and antibiotic resistant conditions.
Earlier, the programme started with a welcome address by Health Commissioner-cum-Secretary, Vishal Chauhan and technical report by Principal Chief Enginner-cum-Secretary of Building & Housing Department, RB Thapa.
On the occasion, Health Department has felicitated the CM for his outstanding works and contributions in the health sector.
During the programme, Managing Director, ACPL, ShamalenduGhoshal, was felicitated by the Chief Minister for the successful completion and handing over of the Hospital to the State Government.
The Chief Minister then felicitated the first batch of thirty mid-level health providers who recently completed a six-month training on community health and will now be posted in rural parts of Sikkim. They were trained under the Ayushman Bharat Programme.
The Chief Minister also launched the 104 Health Helpline, a 24/7 call centre to register grievances, as well as seek advice and information on various pertinent health issues.
A book on Ayurveda and alternate medicine titled ‘Tripoid of Health’ authored by Dr. Gayatri Sharma, Ayurvedic Doctor at AYUSH Hospital, Sochyagang, was also released on the occasion by the Chief Minister.