SKIMS Hospital cries for life support

Dying Slow Death Due To Maladministration, Neglect


Srinagar, Dec 1: One of the Valley’s key referral institutes, SKIMS Medical College Hospital Bemina is going through a messy state of affairs with acute shortage of life-saving drugs and essential equipment threatening lives of hapless patients.
The hospital, which registers around 700 outpatients every day and has 300 inpatients admitted in various specialties, is unable to provide much-needed drugs for various ailments such as diabetes, hypertension, seizures and pregnancy related disorders to the sick.

Official sources told Greater Kashmir that most of the patients have to purchase medicines from private drug stores as hospital administration has failed to make these available at the hospital. “Besides, only few tests are being done at the hospital as it lacks investigation kits, testing reagents and diagnostic equipments like MRI, CT-Scan, Color Doppler, Ultrasound machine, laparoscopic equipments, life saving ventilators, digital X rays, portable X rays essentially required for a associated hospital,” they said.
Patients complain that they are burdened with the additional amount to spend on the drugs, equipment and surgical accessories.
They allege that the cost of treatment and surgery in SKIMS Medical College Hospital is more than a nursing home. They said the average cost of the treatment per patient is Rs 15000 to Rs 20000.
Abdul Gani, who accompanied his son from Budgam for a surgery said that not more than 6 drugs mostly antibiotics were available in the hospital. “We have to purchase all the drugs and surgical equipment from open market which cost us more than Rs 5000 in three days,” he said.
As per the drug list, the antibiotics which are available in the hospital include Pipracilin, Ciprofloxin Azithromycin, Vancomycin and Amikacin while as a long list of drugs for treating infections, diabetes and heart ailments are unavailable.
According to hospital sources the crisis has not occurred overnight. The hospital has been facing such shortage for the last several months. “If sometimes some drugs are provided, the same are near expiry and in inadequate number. Non-availability of medicines also results in occasional scuffle between attendants and doctors,” they said.
The hospital store does not have enough stock of saline, dextrose, Ringer Lactate, fluids, DNS, gauze, bandage, gloves, ECG Stickers, Urine Bags,  folly’s catheters, Endotracheal tubes required in various surgeries and in post-surgical ward, sources said.
They said that even life saving drugs like adrenaline, Syntocinon, Neastigmine, Methergine, Succinylcholine, Metrogyl infusion, Ciprofloxin infusion were not available to be administered to the patients.

Doctors said the drugs like Syntocinon and Mathergine are available even in dispensaries but this hospital does not have the same. “These drugs are required at the time of delivery to induce labour and to control bleeding. The shortage of such essential drugs puts doctors on tenterhooks and the patients are at high risk of complications and even death,” they said.
An official, wishing anonymity said the lives of patients with Myocardial Infarction (MI) and poisoning reporting to the hospital cannot be saved as there is no proper Medical ICU in the institute. “We do not have Aspirin and Clopidrogel, needed for heart attack patients, available here,” he said.
Sources alleged that nurses share injections and even syringes in some wards in absence of adequate supply in the hospital. “It can spread the cross infection among the patients in those departments,” they said.
A patient with asthma needs nebulization, but the authorities are least bothered, he said, adding that small items are lacking but interest is shown in purchasing costly equipment which is required in very few cases.
While SKIMS receives dog bite cases regularly, but unfortunately the hospital does not have essential drugs available for the same. “Hospital even lacks anti-rabies vaccine and isolation ward facility,” doctors said.

According to insiders, the officials, who are running the SKIMS Bemina administration, have been re-employed after their superannuation. “They have nothing at stake and do not care much about the messy affairs at the institute,” sources believe.
Sources alleged that growth of the institute faced a major jolt as it has turned merely into a sub-district hospital after SKIMS, a Deemed University in Soura took over the management of the hospital from a private trust.
“SKIMS Soura has been deputing a senior faculty member as Principal to SKIMS Bemina besides being head of his parent organization there. This remote control from Soura has ensured that this college does not grow,” sources added.
The initial strength of the hospital was around 280 beds but it was reduced to 250. “Since last 14 years they have not bothered to increase the bed strength to 400 as per MCI guidelines for a Medical college which has intake capacity of 50 students,” said an official.
He said the Principal deputed with additional duties had never taken the issue seriously. “If records are seen hardly Principals from SKIMS Soura have attended the JVC medical College for maximum of 70-80- days in a year. This is so unfortunate that a Medical College with an associated hospital has been neglected in such a way,” he said.

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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