Heating system non-functional in Valley Hospitals



Srinagar, Dec 1: The heating system in major hospitals of Kashmir Valley are non-functional as workers running the system went on an indefinite strike demanding release of pending salary.
 With mercury dipping in Valley, the patients and their attendants are facing a huge inconvenience in absence of alternate heating arrangements for them in the health institutions.
 Hundreds of casual workers associated with the Mechanical Hospital and Central Heating Division (MH&CHD), said that they have not received their salary for the past one year due to “callous approach” of health authorities.
 “Every time we raise the issue, authorities assure us that salary would be released soon but despite passing of 12 months nothing has been done. So, we decided to hold strike till our salary is released,” the workers told Greater Kashmir.        
 The attendants of patients admitted in various hospitals associated with the Directorate of Health Services Kashmir (DHSK) and Government Medical College (GMC), Srinagar complained that the shutdown of heating system by the hospital administration was causing hardships to the ailing people.
 “The patients shiver and are suffering immensely due to lack of heating during nights as the temperature reaches close to freezing point,” they said, adding the administration failed to make alternate arrangements.
 According to sources, the heating system was stopped due to paucity of funds. They also attributed the problem to the lack coordination between Health and Medical Education Department and MH&CHD authorities.
 “The funds released by the government are inadequate for running the central heating in the hospitals. The matter was brought to the notice of government many times but no major headway took place in this regard as yet,” they said.
 Some district hospitals in Baramulla, Islamabad, Bandipora and Kupwara have installed Gas heaters but authorities never filed gas cylinders that left the alternate arrangement non-functional, they added.
 “Though the heaters are being used by the hospital administration regularly but the hundreds of the patients are kept in lurch,” the sources added, while saying that the Gynecological section was suffering most as arrangement of heating is mandatory for the pregnant women.
 They stated that traditional heaters and blowers are inadequate to warm up the rooms and wards of the hospital due to erratic power supply during the winter season.
 Official said that the winter season has just set in the state and department has made all necessary arrangements of heating in all districts and sub districts hospitals. The district hospitals have in built heating systems and would be made functional soon.
 When contacted, the Director Health Services Kashmir, Dr Saleem-ur-Rehman admitted the paucity of funds. “We have received Rs 93 lakhs for running the central heating system in Kashmir hospital which is inadequate,” he said.
 However, he said the directorate had already sent a request to the government for extra money. “We require more than Rs 2 crore for it that we have conveyed to government,” he said.
 Similar views were expressed by the Executive Engineer (Mechanical Division) Shafaat Ahmad.

Lastupdate on : Sat, 1 Dec 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sat, 1 Dec 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sun, 2 Dec 2012 00:00:00 IST

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