The Centre on Monday asked states and union territories to ensure smooth movement of healthcare workers during the nationwide lockdown.
In a letter to all chief secretaries of states and union territories, union home secretary Ajay Bhalla said any restrictions on the movement of medical professionals and para-medical staff can lead to severe constraints in rendering COVID and non-COVID medical services.
“As such ensuring unhindered movement of all such medical professionals is essential for meeting public health requirements and saving precious human lives,” the letter stated.
Bhalla also said that the services of medical and para-medical staff are urgently required in meeting the challenge of COVID-19 pandemic.
“Furthermore, the existing staff, apart from this duty, also has to render normal responsibilities, such as conducting immunisationprogrammes, handling the onset of vector and other seasonal diseases, and meeting other non-COVID emergencies,” he said.
He also said that there have been reports of private clinics and nursing homes remaining closed during the lockdown period.
“The functioning of these medical facilities, which supplement the regular medical infrastructure, and relieve the burden on hospitals, is also crucial,” said Bhalla.
“I would urge all states and UTs to ensure that such clinics and nursing homes continue to function without any hindrances,” he added.
Bhalla asked the states and union territories to ensure that their field officials allow smooth movement of all medical professionals, nurses, para medical, sanitation personnel and ambulances and ensure the opening of all private clinics, nursing homes and labs with all their medical professional and staff.
“Such movement should also be facilitated interstate whenever required,” he added.