Call for dental OPD closure on October 22
GUWAHATI: All outdoor patient departments (OPDs) of Regional Dental College and other dental institutes will remain closed on October 22 as the Assam Dental Service Association (ADSA) has announced a series of agitation in support of its seven-point charter of demands in the state.
Dental OPDs will also remain closed on October 26, 27 and 28 and again on November 1, 2 and 3 as part of the ADSA's agitation.
However, the ADSA has exempted emergency services from the purview of the agitation, ADSA president Dr Dilip Kumar Saikia said while addressing a press conference here on Wednesday.
Saikia said 85 dentists have been working against 130 sanctioned posts in various government hospitals of the state.
"Eighty-five dentists against 3.50 crore population means one doctor has to attend 2.50 lakh patients," Saikia said.
"We have been demanding for increasing the number of dentists in the dental institutions of the state. However, there is no move from the government to increase the number of posts," Saikia added.
The ADSA has also been demanding the promotion of dentists working in various institutions. "In 2010, the Gauhati High Court issued a directive to the Assam Government in this regard. Twelve years have elapsed, the state government is yet to take the final decision on promotion of the dentists of the state," he said.
"From 2011 to 2021, then Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma approved many files relating to the promotion of dentists. However, the department has not promoted the dentists yet," Saikia said.
"We demand the government to conduct a probe as to why there is inordinate delay in implementing the High Court order," he added.
The ADSA has also demanded for implementation of a time scale for senior dentists who have been working for more than 11 years without any promotion.
The ADSA further demanded the filling up of vacant posts, granting non-practising allowance to dentists, regularization of jobs of the dentists working under National Health Mission (NHM) and grant pay scale to them equivalent to MBBS, improvement of infrastructures of the dental institutions, implementation of centrally-sponsored schemes line with National Oral Health Programme (NOHP) and Rashtriya Ball Surakshya Karyakram (RBSK) in the state.