Cancer patients camp near SKIMS

Patients rue non-availability of certain drugs

Irfan Tramboo
Srinagar, Aug 24: As restrictions and communication clampdown continued for 20th day in Kashmir, the brunt of it is being faced by the patients, particularly those struggling with fatal disease of cancer.
Scores of cancer patients, who throng to Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS), Soura for chemotherapy sessions or follow ups have to camp in the vicinity of the hospital. Others try to make it to the hospital on due days in trying circumstances. Some manage to reach their destinations, while some are not that lucky.
While all such patients are required to undergo chemotherapy sessions twice or thrice a week, they said in present situation at times it becomes impossible for them to reach the hospital.
Nisar Ahmad, a resident of Banihal, attending his cousin suffering from cancer told Excelsior that it was impossible for him to get the patient to the hospital, thrice a week, and that they have decided to put up in the nearby hospital Sarai.
“If the situation would have been normal, we would have given it a thought to stay home, but it is impossible in this situation to reach here, so we have decided to stay around,” he said.
He added that his cousin was discharged a week ago after more than two months, and that they have not even managed to go home after such a long time given the situation around.
“We are tired like anything, we could not even go home after we stayed here for two months; when we were discharged, we found it better not to go home and stay around as our patient was required to come for sessions twice in a week,” he added.
While, such patients and attendants are struggling with the free movement on the roads and the challenge of reaching the hospitals, some are struggling for the want of drugs that are not even available in the market.
Fayaz Ahmad, a resident of Budgam has been searching for injection Aronax-10 at every medical shop he could visit, but so far, his search has ended with nothing in hand.
His brother, who is suffering from cancer, has to be given a dose of 10 injections, but he has managed to get only 3 from the market so far.
“I have searched everywhere, but I have failed to get the rest of 7 injections; I would have got all the 10 in one go, but they are bit costlier,” he told Excelsior, adding that he has no idea about how to manage the rest.
The SKIMS is providing the patients with limited drugs free of costs and those that are not provided there, the patients used to get those from the market. However, with, either, limited stocks or with the shortage of few important drugs in the market, the cancer patients are said to be having a tough time.