By Our Reporter, Shillong News | Shillong, April 03, 2018:
Despite the fact that cancer is on the rise in the state, the much-hyped project of establishing a well-equipped Cancer wing at Shillong Civil Hospital is yet to be made operational even after 10 years of signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).
The main objective of this initiative was to serve the poorer section of the society considering the fact that treatment for the disease is an expensive affair. With this in mind, the state government had way back in December 5, 2008, during the tenure of former Chief Minister Dr. Donkupar Roy, signed the MoU for the establishment of Cancer Wing equipped with modern day technology at the Civil Hospital in the city.
Almost a decade and counting, the cancer wing dedicated especially to the poorer section of the society is yet to be functional.
Admitting the delay, Health Minister, AL Hek said that the MoU was signed way back in 2008 and the work only commenced in the year 2011. He, however, said that ninety percent of the work has been completed and only ten percent is left.
The foundation stone for the construction of the Cancer wing in Shillong Civil Hospital was laid down by former Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma on March 7, 2011.
It may be mentioned that a lot of the affected families from the state are seeking treatment outside the state and, Christian Medical College (CMC) in Vellore, Tamil Nadu and Tata Memorial in Mumbai are few of the popular and most frequented medical asylums.
Explaining about the delay in completion of the project, Hek said that the delay was caused as the government had to first procure the new machines.
Hek has already asserted that he would prioritise the completion of the cancer wing and see that the work is completed within a year or so.
It may be recalled that the construction of the wing started in 2011 with a funding of Rs 26 crore from the Department of Atomic Energy, Government of India. In 2015, a team from the Department of Atomic Energy had pulled up the state government for the delay. Modern day equipments worth Rs 15 crore will be used to provide better medical facilities to patients.