CT-scan, lifts lying defunct in DH Baramulla; patient care takes a hit

In the absence of lift, attendants carrying patient on a stretcher in District Hospital Baramulla. -Excelsior/Aabid Nabi
In the absence of lift, attendants carrying patient on a stretcher in District Hospital Baramulla. -Excelsior/Aabid Nabi

Inquiry initiated in installation of lifts: DC

Suhail Bhat
SRINAGAR, Jan 21: Much to the distress of the patient, the lift and CT-Scan machines are lying defunct in District Hospital Baramulla for the last three months causing inconvenience to hundreds of people who visit the facility for healthcare needs.
In absence of the lift facilities patients and attendants are forced to use stairway where chances of accidents are higher in winter owing to the slippery conditions. The scenes of attendants ferrying critical patients on their shoulders for post-operative care are often witnessed. “What kind of hospital is this where we have to lift patients who have undergone a surgery on shoulders? Who would take the responsibility if mishap happens on the way?” Firdous Ahmad, an attendant, asked. He said that the lift develops technical snags every now and then and accused authorities of shielding the private company that is responsible for the maintenance of the facility.
Deputy Commissioner Baramulla, G N Itoo told Excelsior that an inquiry has already been initiated in the installation of lifts. To mitigate the crisis, he said, the Jammu and Kashmir Projects Corporation has been asked to install a third lift.
Adding to the miseries of the patients, the CT-scan machine of the hospital is not working for last three months. As the facility is missing the patients either visit private clinics or travel long distances for diagnostic facilities which, they said, is expensive and time consuming.
The patients complained that they have to either visit Sub District Hospital Handwara or SMHS in Srinagar for the services. “The process is expensive and takes time,” Ali Mohammad, a local said. He added that these hospitals are overburdened. “The hospitals are already overburdened. They entertain their patients first. We receive delayed dates,” he said and accused the Government of showing lax attitude towards the issues of downtrodden people.
Some of the patients visit private diagnostic centers for the services which are expensive. “We have to pay Rs 4000- 5000 at a private clinic for a test which could have cost us half an amount in a Government hospital, “another patient said.
An official at the hospital said that that the department has roped in a private company for services and they are causing the delay. “We have been writing to them for last several days. This is a good initiate by the department and would bring in quality services,” he said. He, however, admitted that patient care is taking a hit in absence of the services.
Regarding the defunct CT-Scan, Itoo said that the hospital has been working on the issue for the last 15 days and the machine would be restored within a week. ” I visited the facility yesterday and learned from the hospital administration that they are awaiting for the arrival of some of the equipment that were ordered from outside. I think they have reached today and the repair work is underway,” he said.