Ready for a booster shot
The premier hospital of the region has sought over R1,700 crore for new projects under the 12th Five-year Plan. Once the nod comes through, the PGI hopes to cure some of its chronic ailments THE PLAN IS TO SPEND R229 CRORE IN 2012 AND ABOUT R400 CRORE EAC
Vishav Bharti CHANDIGARH: The region’s premier hospital is set to get bigger and better. Neurosciences, mental health, mother and child care, organ transplant and liver diseases will be the focus areas of the Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGI), Chandigarh, for the 12th Five-Year Plan, under which it has sought Rs 1,742 crore for new projects. The plan is to increase capacity by 50%, taking the number of beds to 3,000.
As per the proposal for the 201217 Plan and a master plan of the institute prepared by a central body, Hospital Services Consultancy Corporation (HSCC) — both documents presented before the union health minister last month at PGI — the institute would set up four major centres over the next decade.
These include a Neurosciences Centre, an Advanced Mother & Child Care Centre, an Advanced Liver Centre and an Advanced Mental Health Care Centre that would include a centre for child and adolescent psychiatry. These centres would add more than 1,000 new beds in their separate buildings across the 277-acre PGI campus.
Of the Rs 1,742 crore sought in the plan submitted to the union health ministry and forwarded to the Planning Commission of India in March, Rs 925 crore would be spent on construction work and Rs 692 crore on equipment and furniture. The rest would be spent on salaries and other activities.
As of now, the plan is to spend Rs 229 crore in 2012 and about Rs 400 crore each in the subsequent years till 2017. The centres, to be built in phases, are planned to be made functional within the 2012-17 Plan and would be complete within a decade, taking into account the pace and manner of work at the PGI in the past.
Besides the new projects, work on the expansion of Nehru Hospital (the old PGI building) — adding a new block of 250 beds including a 90-bed cancer block — is already on. Though all these projects were conceived during the 11th Plan, the institute has sought Rs 190 crore as additional funding under the 12th Plan for the home stretch. In the 11th Plan, the institute had sought Rs 625 crore, and got Rs 515 crore.
Apart from the four patient care clinical centres, the institute plans to set up a Rs 50-crore Urban & Rural Health Centre, for prevention of stroke, cardiovascular diseases, brain stroke and diabetes. The centre will be given annual funding of Rs 3 crore by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
Besides that, the institute is going to focus on organ donation and transplant services. It has proposed to set up an Organ Retrieval Banking Organisation (ORBO) on the lines of the one at Delhi-based All India Institute of Medical Sciences, which will be built at a cost of Rs 50 crore. The ORBO will work on cadaver liver transplant, corneal and retinal services, eye bank, bone bank and organ transplantation centre. RESEARCH AND STUDY PLANS A major area of focus in the coming five years would be strengthening the diagnostic and research facilities by establishing a Bio-Safety Laboratory-3 for research on animals. So far, only the National Jalma Institute of Leprosy and other Mycobacterial Diseases in Agra has this sophisticated laboratory for animals. It will be built at a cost of Rs 10 crore. Similarly, to strengthen research capabilities of the institute, the PGI has planned to set up a Centre for Translational Research at a cost of Rs 50 crore, which would focus on developing the temperament of PGI researchers in a way that the results of their work are more specifically applicable to people at large.
The institute is also planning to expand its academic expanse by opening new departments and adding new courses and disciplines, for which it has sought Rs 50 crore. Among the project is a School of Hospital Administration on the lines of the present School of Public Health. The project will cost Rs 4 crore. FUNDING HOPES The funding for most of the advanced centres would come from the upcoming 12th Five Year Plan. According to senior officials of the PGI, funding would not be a problem for the institute that enters its golden jubilee year this July 7.
“In view of the upcoming golden jubilee of the institute, we will strengthen the institute. We want the PGI to come up with new advanced centres,” union health secretary PK Pradhan had clearly said last month, when he was here to attend the PGI’s annual convocation.
“We have been assured by the health ministry about the funding for the new projects, and we are very hopeful that all our dream projects will materialise,” said Manju Wadwalkar, official spokesperson, PGI.
But Dr BK Sharma, former director of the PGI, wants focus on the peripheral services too. “Besides getting new centres, there should be focus on maintaining the existing infrastructure. There is not much space left on campus, so the PGI should consider satellite centres on the lines of Delhi’s AIIMS. These centres should be fully funded by the central government and be under the control of the PGI.”