Health Services Inadequate in Tajik South

Residents of Qurghonteppa in southern Tajikistan say they get poor service from doctors in the state healthcare system, who will not see them unless they pay for treatment that is supposed to be free.

Health Services Inadequate in Tajik South

Residents of Qurghonteppa in southern Tajikistan say they get poor service from doctors in the state healthcare system, who will not see them unless they pay for treatment that is supposed to be free.

Friday, 20 March, 2009
Sherali Buzmakov, head of health services for Khatlon region, rejects any suggestion that doctors take bribes. He says it is just that they are overworked and often too busy to see patients.



Overall, Khatlon is desperately short of doctors, and so far efforts to recruit more from other parts of Tajikistan have failed.



One of the main reasons for staffing shortages is that doctors are so poorly paid, so they either stay and live on bribes, or leave the country for better jobs abroad.



The shortage of doctors is so acute that as the Tajik military launches the twice-yearly conscription programme, young men are unlikely to be put through the required health and psychiatric checks.

Tajikistan
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