Provincial health officials denied salary for four monthsStaffers serving at the health offices run by the health directorate of the Ministry of Social Development in Province 3 have not been paid for the last four months.
Staffers serving at the health offices run by the health directorate of the Ministry of Social Development in Province 3 have not been paid for the last four months.
Due to the apathy of the concerned provincial ministry, those staffers have also been without work since the beginning of the current fiscal year.
The district public health offices (DPHO) were changed into provincial health offices. Over 200 health workers serve under 13 health offices of Province 3.
Krishna Bahadur Chand, chief of the provincial health office in Kathmandu, said his office had no funds and programme so far this fiscal year. “The provincial government sent neither the budget to pay staff salary nor any programme to our office,” said Chand. Over 60 officials have been serving in the health offices of Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur districts.
Due to the lack of work in the health offices, some staffers serving in the provincial health offices of the Valley go to the health facilities run by the local level to assist them. Some are on a long leave and others come to office just for the attendance.
According to Chand, health offices of other provinces have been running smoothly and they have been implementing health programmes of their respective provinces. He said that his office could not do anything unless the state government gave it the mandate and budget to implement programmes.
Dirgha Narayan Poudel, secretary at the provincial Ministry of Social Development, concedes that officials serving in provincial health offices have been deprived of salary for months. He said that the federal government has not sent the salary of health workers to the province, adding that the ministry would immediately release the salary of the health staffers once it got the money from the federal government.
“We have prepared the policies and programmes of the province,” he said, adding that his ministry would send both the programmes and budget to the offices at the earliest. He said that the confusion over the number of health offices had delayed the release of budget and drafting of the programmes.
The federal government has decided to have health offices in all the 77 districts. Earlier, it had decided to keep only 42 offices.