Lawmakers from across the aisle in Jatiya Sangsad (parliament) on Sunday expressed resentment at the Health Ministry as people are not getting health services due to the deplorable state of upazila and district health complexes in their respective areas, reports news agency UNB.

Speaking during the question-answer session, they alleged there are serious shortage of physicians, nurses and other health staff in different health complexes and hospitals in their constituencies causing serious hamper in providing health services to people.

The treasury and opposition MPs also raised their voices saying many physicians and nurses, posted in upazila health complexes, do not stay there.

Ruling Awami League (AL) MP Dhirendra Debnath and Zillul Hakim separately said that people in their constituencies are not getting health services due to lack of physicians, consultants and health staff.

Another senior MP of the ruling party, Shajahan Khan said a 50-bed hospital in his constituency was increased to 250 beds. But people are not getting benefits of this as no additional physicians and nurses were appointed at the hospital.

“Earlier, I raised the same issue before the health minister in parliament and he assured me of appointing additional physicians and other staff for the hospital. But no measures have been taken as yet,” he said.

Another Awami League MP, SM Shahzada, in his speech said he is in big trouble due to the sorry state of the health complex in his constituency.

He also said the lone health complex in Golachipa upazila under his constituency -- Patuakhali-3 -- remained in a very sorry state.

“This health complex was established a long time ago. Now it is in a dilapidated condition,” he said.

He mentioned that there are several buildings inside this health complex which have been declared abandoned due to their dilapidated condition.

The MP further said that this upazila has a population of 500,000. There are about 250,000 more people in the adjoining Rangabali upazila.

“Health services of two upazilas are managed from this health centre,” he also said.

SM Shahzada also said that he wrote to the minister two and a half years ago for a new health complex.

Jatiya Party MP and Opposition Chief Whip Mashiur Rahman Ranga said there are costly medical equipment for treatment of kidney dialysis and cancer remaining unused in a hospital in his area for years.

He further said those expensive medical equipment cannot be used due to not having technical staff.

Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) MP Rumeen Farhana said due to inefficiency of the government, the health ministry could not spend a major portion of the money allocated in the development budget.

Awami League MP Shahiduzzaman Sarker, Moazzem Hossain Ratan, Shahiduzzaman, Bikolpodhara Bangladesh MP Abdul Mannan, Gono Forum MP Mokabbir Khan, Jatiya Party MP Kazi Firoz Rashid also strongly criticised the health minister.

In reply to the MPs’ outcry, Health Minister Zahid Maleque admitted that there is a shortage of physicians and other staff in different hospitals and health complexes in the country.

He, however, said, the government has reappointed many physicians and nurses during the Covid-19 pandemic and more physicians and other health staff will be recruited soon.