CAG audits government health infrastructure, report by Monsoon session

NEW DELHI: In the midst of the lockout, the Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General is working full time to complete the assessment of the country's health infrastructure, whether they are compatible with it. Important reports that are being prepared include an audit of the results in ESI hospitals and another on the procurement of medicines and vaccines for the (CGHS).

The two reports, among dozens of others, are part of CAG's 2019-20 audit plan and are nearly 65% ​​complete without delay due to two months of lockdown. The auditor is also reviewing the Center and its adherence to the Fiscal Responsibility Law and (FRBM), a major audit in light of the government-announced Rs 20 lakh crore stimulus.

Although the stimulus package announced by the FM last week may skip the audit as they are allocations for the current financial year, however, performance in previous years could be an important criterion in determining government compliance with fiscal responsibilities.

Like ESI hospitals, the CGHS operates dispensaries in all states that provide OPD services and free medications to insured employees and retirees. According to sources, CAG Rajiv Mehrishi has been regularly monitoring the progress of reports intended to be completed by the Monsoon session. Despite the continued blockade, Mehrishi and other top CAG officials have been regularly attending the office since April 14, a senior official said.

About 85% of the state's audit reports and 65% of the central ministries and departments planned for 2019-20 are complete and will be ready for the Monsoon session for presentation, the official said.

The other major reports, which are likely to be ready in the next two months, include managing the government's public debt; an evaluation of cooperative banks; railway finance report; and the .

Many of ESI's hospitals have currently been serving as Covid-19 hospitals for the treatment of pandemic cases across the country. These super specialty hospitals serve approximately 70% of organized sector employees in the lowest salary segment with a salary cap of Rs 15,000/month.