150-bedded Chopra Nursing Home lying closed since Aug 2017, renovation work yet to be started

Col Chopra Nursing Home lying non-functional for last more than three years. (UNI)
Col Chopra Nursing Home lying non-functional for last more than three years. (UNI)

Can be used to treat COVID patients if ready
Govind Sharma
JAMMU, May 10: The multi-storey complex of Sir Colonel Chopra Nursing Home has been virtually lying closed for any public use for last more than three years on account of repair and renovation, which if done timely, the building could be used now for shifting and treatment of COVID patients.
The 6-storey building of the Nursing Home is adjacent to the Government Medical College (GMC) Jammu. It was closed for any public use in the month of August 2017 after short-circuiting and seepage in its 1st two floors. Since then its first two floors were completely closed while one floor was given to Oncology Department for using as ward and rooms while other three floors are being used by doctors as their personal rooms.
Sources told Excelsior that in the year 2019, a detailed project report for repair and renovation of the multi-storey complex of the Nursing Home with an estimated cost of Rs 17 crore was prepared by the concerned officers of GMC Jammu and submitted to Administrative Department.
As per the DPR, the 150-bedded Nursing Home had to be renovated on the lines of reputed private hospitals with 4 modular theatres at ground floor and provisioning of oxygen pipeline with suction on each floor.
Sources said presently when GMC Jammu is struggling with shortage of oxygen supported beds and inadequate Level-1 care facility, 150-bedded Sir Col Chopra Nursing Home could be an asset. They said that December 2019 was the 2nd deadline fixed by the Government to complete the renovation and repair work of the Nursing Home and throw it open for general public but no heed was paid towards it and a sum of Rs 5 crore that was sanctioned to start the work also lapsed on March 31, 2021.
“As per the reports, tendering work for the civil work of the Nursing Home has been completed few days back but the concerned agency is yet to allot the tenders,” they said, adding, if the work is started even from tomorrow, its completion would take at least 10-12 months of time,” sources maintained.
However, they said, keeping in view 3rd wave of pandemic, the repair and renovation work of the Nursing Home should be taken up on war basis so that it can be used for COVID patients in near future if not now. Besides, they said the construction work of the new emergency block should be accelerated which can also be used for COVID patients in this critical situation when patients have been struggling to get oxygen supported beds.
“Had the GMC administration acted timely and completed the project in time, Government had no need to take such a radical decision of taking over 50 % bed capacity of four private hospitals/nursing homes of Jammu under its control for COVID care,” sources said, adding, the Hospital administration should take up the work of the Nursing Home on fast track basis.