Kollam to develop a parallel brigade of nurses

Panchayat trains 100 qualified nurses from SC community in govt. hospitals with a stipend

Government hospitals struggling with unsustainable workload may soon get some extra hands through Malakhakoottam, an innovative project launched by the Kollam district panchayat.

In a bid to address the staff shortage in hospitals and to support qualified women, the panchayat will provide on job training with stipend for 100 Scheduled Caste women who have completed General or BSc Nursing. The duration of apprenticeship will be two years and the panchayat has set aside ₹60 lakh for the initial months till the next financial year.

“A local body is introducing such an initiative for the first time in Kerala. The COVID brigade included a large percentage of nurses and its disbanding has affected many hospitals. We are offering government hospitals a workforce of 100 nurses, while helping the women find placement,” says Sam K. Daniel, district panchayat president.

On Nov. 19

The District Scheduled Caste Development office has already shortlisted the 100 beneficiaries and Minister for Devaswoms and Welfare of SC/STs and Backward Classes K. Radhakrishnan will hand over the appointment letters to them on November 19.

While the project is expected to provide a breather to burdened healthcare facilities, it also helps the beneficiaries work near their homes and earn the experience required for jobs outside the State and abroad. “Those who completed general nursing will receive a monthly honorarium of ₹10,000 while it will be ₹12,500 for fresh BSc Nursing graduates. The selected candidates will be deployed this month itself. They can join duty from December,” adds Mr. Daniel.

68 govt. facilities

The District Medical Office has already forwarded a list of 68 government facilities in Kollam facing staff shortage. The beneficiaries were screened by a committee including experts from government nursing schools. According to officials, the demand was very high, with most hospitals, including Government Medical College and District Hospital, requesting allocations. “We received around 110 applications from qualified women from areas under the Kollam district panchayat. The selected candidates will be allocated hospitals near their homes in coordination with the Health Department,” says S.S. Beena, District Scheduled Caste Development Officer.

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