|GMOA replies to DGHS
With reference to the press release given by the Director General of Health Services on 01.03.2002 I wish to state that I am the Assistant Secretary of the GMOA and presently functioning as the acting secretary duly authorised by the General Committee of the GMOA. It is sad to note that the present Director General of Health Services is not aware of the present position of the trade union at least.
Even through the Director General of Health Services had come out with various excuses to mask his inefficiency he had managed to hide the true situation. The former practice before the present Director General took over office was to give post interns appointments with effect from the following day when the Intern Medical Officers complete their internship training. All former Director Generals were capable enough to achieve this as they had enough experience in management at various levels and they understood the value of planning of activities without waiting till the last moment to initiate procedures which are going to take time.
Unfortunately when the present Director General of Health Services was appointed few years ago on contract basis at age on 62 with wide experience in Genito Urinary Surgery and only few years experience as an action Director in a Teaching Hospital, giving appointments to Intern Medical Officers became a major problem.
Five batches of Interns who completed internship during the last three years were given appointments only after 10 months of completion of internship. this clearly shows that problem of delaying appointments was not confined to one batch.
As a result of this delay due to the administrative inefficiency of the head of the department, services of Intern Medical Officers who completed their internship appointments were obtained minimally as they worked as additional hands in bigger hospitals while there is a urgent need for more Medical Officers in rural areas to improve the quality of health services for the poor patients of this country. Just writing letters from airconditioned rooms to officers which are located one to two miles away within the Colombo City and waiting months to get a positive result is not a characteristic feature of a good manager. This kind of action explained in the Director Generals statement could be carried out from a office by a Senior Clerk or a Administrative Officer. I regret to note that the present Director General of Health Services in his press statement had shown the entire country that he had failed to meet the relevant authorities to discuss with them and to show them the importance of positing these Medical Officers to the periphery when there is a dire need for their services. I wish to remind the Director General of Health Services that our theme is "If there is a will there is a way".
I clearly state that GMOA is well aware that the present Minister is not directly responsible for poor human resource management skills of the officers concerned. To our surprise when GMOA met the present Secretary of Health who took prompt action within minutes and made arrangement with the relevant Deputy Director Generals to post all the Interns who have completed internship appointments. Further to that, the Secretary of Health made arrangements to expedite the process of given appointments to the Intern Medical Officers who are due to finish their internship training. This clearly shows the positive attitude of a manager with efficiency.
I also wish to state that Government Medical Officers are undergoing numerous difficulties such as non-availability of quarters lack of transport in hospitals, non-filling of administrative posts in provinces, non-availability of wards for consultants in hospitals due to poor planning and decision making of the Department where we feel the head of the Department is responsible.
Finally, I wish to state that it is not only few individuals but the entire GMOA protested against the appointment of the present Director General of Health Services by taking trade union action and later requesting him to step down gracefully. I wish to state that the present Director General of Health Services has done a great injustice to his other senior colloquies in Medical profession by sticking to this highest post in the department with political wish at the age of sixty five.
Our attempt on all times is to highlight deficiencies in the health sector with a view
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