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Shortage of Auxiliary Nurse Midwives Hit Karnataka in India - News - Nurses Arena Forum

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Shortage of Auxiliary Nurse Midwives Hit Karnataka in India by katty : June 28, 2018, 09:31:46 AM
A whopping 3,959 posts of Auxiliary Nurse Midwife (ANMs) are vacant in the state along with 2,157 staff nurse posts, which is affecting the first line of preventive care like immunisation, child and maternal health care, as deliveries are assisted by staff nurses.

Dr Rajkumar N, Deputy Director, Maternal Health, Department of Health and Family Welfare, said, “If ANMs are not available in a health centre, we rely on the doctor or ASHAs. We manage with existing ANMs and one worker may be given charge of two or three sub-centres.”

Dr Ramachandra Bairy, Joint Director, Immunisation, Department of Health and Family Welfare, said, “Immunisation programmes are affected when there is a shortage of ANMs. They are the frontline workers of all national health programmes and ASHAs can only bring the children for vaccination, they cannot give the prick. So, the existing ANMs have more population to cater to and are burdened.”

“Except north Karnataka, where PHCs and sub-centres still see deliveries, due to an increase in institutional delivery rate, the burden of assisting childbirth is not as much as it used to be when home deliveries were the norm. Staff nurses mostly take care of deliveries now,” he added.

While there are 11,899 sanctioned posts for ANMs (permanent and contractual), there are 14,320 posts for staff nurses (permanent and contractual). This accounts for 33% vacancies in ANM posts. These ANMs — all women — run 9,443 sub-centres, 2,359 primary health centres, 206 community health centres and 146 taluk hospitals, which are mostly the only option for the poor.

According to the Indian Public Health Standards, for every 5,000 population, there should be one ANM which is not the case in the state. No new recruitment has taken place in the past five years as it is embroiled in court cases and the Karnataka Public Service Commission (KPSC) recruitment process is long drawn.

Dr Srinivasa Gowda, Director, Department of Health and Family Welfare, said, “We will be going in for counselling shortly to fill 1,600 posts of ANMs. The contract ANMs had gone to court and got a stay order which we have managed to vacate.” The department does not have financial approval to fill all 3,220 permanent ANM posts.

Yadgir district, for example, figures in the 100 most backward districts list of NITI Aayog and has 47% of its ANM posts vacant. Chikkaballapur district, that is just about 30 km away from the international airport, has 54% vacant ANM posts.
Source: New India Express

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