ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has decided to take over estate hospitals that are operated by a number of plantations companies along with land, Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi said.
“The government is continuing the process to take over 76 Estate hospitals in the country that are at the moment operates under Plantation Companies,” Minister Wanniarachchi told parliament.
“As an initial step to acquire lands to develop these hospitals the government has already gathered relevant information required for the process”
Minister said legally the government cannot develop any hospital that are under private sector without taking over the lands and the current health laws.
“All these health facilities are under the control of Plantation Companies,” she said. “Therefore, to develop them without taking them under the government is legally restricted.”
The plantations companies are operating the firms under long term lease.
Ministry of Health also looks for possibilities to increase the number of MBA qualified doctors, health staff and Ambulance services in the Estate medical centres.
“It takes about 5 years to create a doctor,” she said. “Therefore, it is difficult for me to create doctors all at once. It is better if we can assign 02 doctors per each existing hospital”
“But there is a shortage of doctors in the country and also a shortage in medical staff. And we are struggling with Ambulance services as well.”
“As the government we are having discussions with multiple parties to get some of the Ambulances we need without any loans.
The Health Ministry is also having discussions on allocating money of the Covid fund to buy Ambulances for the health service sector as well”(Colombo/ Jan 08/2020)