AAP (Photo Credit: Twitter)
Delhi: Months after Gujarat’s Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel rubbished the idea of the Aam Aadmi Party-led Delhi government’s Mohalla Clinics, the Gujarat government, too, has decided to start small health centers in densely populated areas of towns and cities in the state. The timing of it also coincides with the Aam Aadmi Party launching the trial operation of its widely acclaimed Mohalla Clinic model at ten spots in Ahmedabad. The AAP launched the trial of their "Mohalla Clinic" Model in Gujarat on December 11, followed by the BJP government announcing Deendayal Clinics for the urban poor on December 21.
Responding to a BJP legislator earlier this year whether the BJP government was planning to set up anything similar to Mohalla Clinics in Gujarat, Dy CM Patel said, “Gujarat model of healthcare is far better than the mohalla clinics model in Delhi. Many other states were trying to replicate the Gujarat model.” A closer look at Gujarat’s government’s proposal of Deen Dayal clinics reveals that the model is a replica of Delhi’s Mohalla Clinic model. The government in the state will operate OPDs in towns and cities with over one lakh population.
Consultations and treatment at these clinics would be free of cost and patients needing hospitalization will be referred to hospitals too, just like the AAP government in Delhi operates its clinics in the capital.
While parties attacking their opponents’ model of governance is commonplace, it is unusual that they replicate the same in their state, especially in a matter of few months. Leaving the politics of whether the model is a replica of the Delhi model or not, altogether, it is good news for Gujarat. The Deen Dayal clinics, if operated optimally like the Mohalla Clinics, can help provide access to quality healthcare to the economically disadvantaged in cities and towns.
Taking a cue from the AAP’s successful healthcare model, several state governments have started replicating it. Telangana, MP, Karnataka, and Jharkhand have announced their plans of setting up similar structures in their respective states. Gujarat too is following the lead.