Pune: The state’s plan to set up a Rs 150-crore dedicated infectious diseases hospital on a 12-acre plot at Yewalewadi in Kondhwa Budruk has failed to take off in spite of a government-appointed expert committee submitting i ts recommendations on the facility’ s design and service in July this year.
“The new government is yet to give its approval to the plan,” said an official from the state health department. The plan to set up a welle quipped infectious diseases hospital in Pune goes back to 2019, soon after the H1N1 pandemic.
“It is a 13-year-old proposal, which the state government under former CM Uddhav Thackeray revived by constituting a 10 member committee. The panel was told to submit its recommendations on the overall design of the hospital. Though the committee submitted its suggestions in July, the plan has remained on paper,” the official said.
In addition to Covid-19 and H1N1 (swine flu), the proposed hospital was expected to be fully equipped to quarantine, isolate and treat patients with even more dangerous infectious diseases, such as Ebola, Cremean Congo Haemorrhagic Fever, Nipah and Zika. Activists criticized the government’s laxity in executing the plan.
“It took them 13 years to finalize the design of the hospital. Let’s now see how man y months or years the government takes to make the facility fully functional, ” said health activist and medical practitioner Dr Sanjay Dabhade.
Despite related attempts, Maharashtra health minister Tanaji Sawant and acting director of the state health department Dr Nitin Ambadekar could not be reached for their comments.