Maharashtra government to modify salary structure of health contractual workers, will benefit 22,500 employees

Mumbai: The Maharashtra government on Thursday announced that it will modify the salary structure of contractual workers under the National Health Mission (NHM). The move will reportedly benefit at least 22,500 employees. The decision was made in the wake of income disparity between employees in urban and rural areas.

Dr Mahesh Botle, from the health department stated, ‘NHM contractual staff members have been demanding better pay and permanent postings for a while now. In an observation it has turned out that contractual employees were quitting jobs to join the private sector for better pay”.  We created contractual posts and fixed salaries as new programmes were added in NHM, but there were variations in the salary structure between old and new posts,” added  Botle.

The State Health Minister Rajesh Tope pointed out  that funds worth ₹53 crore required for the salary modification will be provided and the income disparity between the employees in urban areas will be equal to those posted in rural areas. There are at least 597 posts for doctors of allopathy, Ayurveda, homoeopathy and Unani in NHM.

A proposal was prepared to introduce pay parity in the salary structure in 2018. However, it took long to implement it.  Health officials exclaimed that the proposal, which was approved on Thursday, will improve the pay structure of 22,500 contractual employees, of whom 12,000 would benefit as per the minimum wage requirement.

Meanwhile, the state government is working on structuring new rules for the recruitment appointment of officials on permanent positions to allow NHM contractual staffers to apply for the same, according to the officials privy to the matter. The NHM was established in the state in 2007 to provide an overall health infrastructure for various programmes in urban and rural bodies. It operates programmes related to non-communicable diseases, mental health as well as maternal and child care and has appointed at least 29,000 doctors, paramedics, technicians, nurses, and multi-purpose workers.

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