BY OUR STAFF REPORTER
GUWAHATI, February 15: Members of the Rural Health Practitioners Association have started a protest programme at Dighalipukhuripar here on Sunday against the State government’s apathy towards them. The protest will continue till February 17.
The main demands of the Association are: the future of rural health practitioners in the State should be secured; valid medical degrees should be given to rural health practitioners by the government; and regular posts should be created for these health practitioners in different government hospitals across the State.
The Association stated that the Assam Rural Health Regulatory Authority Act (ARHRAA), which was introduced by the State government in 2004, was declared unconstitutiol by the Gauhati High Court, jeopardizing the career of these medical practitioners.
The ARHRAA was introduced by the State government with the support of all political parties to develop the rural health structure of Assam.
Under this Act, the government instituted the Medical Institute Jorhat and started a diploma course med Diploma in Medicine & Rural Health Care (DMRHC) in 2005, to create mid–level practitioners who will serve in rural areas of the State. The diploma holders are popularly known as Rural Health Practitioners (RHP).
Starting from 2005 till date, 419 students have so far completed the course and are serving in rural areas under the tiol Health Mission (NHM), while 500 students are still continuing their studies.