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Indian city to use biometrics to curb absenteeism at health centers


The health department in Chandigarh, India is up in arms against the rising complaints of absenteeism in health centers and as a result biometric machines will soon be installed. Patients have complained about the non-availability of doctors and nurses whenever they visit health centers, to be told that the doctors were on rounds. In some instances the staff has been absent for days, which becomes a hassle to patients. The complaints have reached the office of the Director of Health Services and corresponding actions will be taken to respond to that.

Chandigarh’s union territory health department will be setting up biometric machines in four health centers, including the Health and Family Welfare, Malaria, Immunization and National Rural Health Mission centers. The health centers are under the jurisdiction of the Director of Health Services.

Once the biometric machines are installed, there will be a record of all staff members on duty at the centers.

However, even before the biometric machines are installed, resistance has already been felt from staff at various centers. One contractual staff member expressed how the department is able to spend public funds on such technology but refuses to take corrective actions to address complaints on delayed or non-payment of salaries at times.

Do you think biometrics is the appropriate way to deal with employee absenteeism?

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