Gangtok, 16 Feb:
Sikkim Progressive Youth Forum [SPYF] has demanded that all district hospitals in the State provide health services and benefits meeting the specifics detailed in the Indian Public Health Standards [IPHS]. SPYF, it may be recalled, had launched a strong movement in the final months of the last government pressing this very demand.
The organisation has further demanded that all District Hospitals, Primary Health Centres and other health centres in the State provide medicines free of cost.
SPYF announced today that it will re-launch its movement if these demands are still not fulfilled.
Addressing a press conference here this afternoon, SPYF member Shankar Sharma informed that the organization will meet Health Minister Dr MK Sharma soon on this issue and submit its demands in written.
He mentioned that the organisation had started its movement initially for Gyalshing District Hospital but will now speak up for all District Hospitals and Health Centres in the State.
“After our movement, Gyalshing District Hospital received some facilities but not all our demands have been fulfilled. Now, these facilities are slacking again so we have decided to launch our movement once again,” he explained.
Mr Sharma informed that SPFY has collected signatures of more than 10,000 people during its recent tour of rural Sikkim to understand the condition of health centres in the State.
“We will submit these signatures with our demand to the Health Minister soon,” he said.
Another SPYF member, Rupen Karki, mentioned that SPYF will primarily be pursuing two demands – provision of health services and benefits as per the Indian Public Health Standards [IPHS] and free medicines at all District Hospitals, Primary Health Centres and other health centres in the State.
“Health is a primary issue for the people so we are very hopeful that the present government will address our demands in the coming budget session of the State in the interest of the people,” he said.
He underlined that these issues have not been raised exclusively by the SPYF but were also supported by the Sikkim Krantikari Manch when it was in the Opposition during SPYF’s movement.
Mr Karki stressed that health services in rural areas were in very pathetic condition and that the pressure on District Hospital would reduce if the condition of rural health centress were improved.