Health infrastructure in the state of Madhya Pradesh needs urgent attention as the state endeavors to bring down its high rates of infant and maternal deaths. Though state has introduced many schemes, and has number of programmes in this regard but they are not enough, until and unless it has adequate infrastructure to support its implementation.
State of Madhya Pradesh in its recent human development report provides data of health infrastructure based on the year 2006 records. State has 103 district and civil hospitals and each hospital serves more than six and half lakh people of the state, which is huge to be managed by one hospital. The exact figures provided in the report are 668079.
In rural areas primary health centre (PHC) is crucial health facility and there is lot of dependence on it particularly by weaker section which cannot anyway afford the private facilities. The data provides that rural population served per Primary health centre is 42665 and there are 1152 PHC’s in the state. In Madhya Pradesh in last twelve years the number of PHCs has gone down, the reason cited for it that it is because of conversion primary health centres into community health centre. This change has brought down the population serviced by each community health centre from over 3.6 lakhs in year 1994 to 2.6 lakhs in year 2006, thus leading to some improvement but that is not adequate. As per Government of India prescribed norm for the population served per primary health centre is 30,000 which also is debated as more by many especially since India has high rates of infant and maternal deaths. While in Madhya Pradesh we exceed the norm substantially, indicating that we have adequate health infrastructure for rural people of the state.
In fact we look at the health institution together in the state vis a vis at population served per health institution it is 6645 which is far less than what is needed. Their also is shortage of quality manpower and other basic facilities at the health centre and even at hospitals. In fact the human development report categorically state that state needs to do something innovative to improve access and quality of health care for its people. Though State proclaims to reduce and infant and maternal deaths rates as its first priority, and has introduced many schemes and pushing for increasing awareness among communities but needs to strengthen its supply side and fasten pace for increasing its infrastructure both physical and human resources immediately.