Health Department fails to upgrade JLNM Hospital

Institution Faces Acute Shortage Of Docs,Paramedics



Srinagar, Dec 8: Inadequate doctors and paramedical staff are taking heavy toll on the patient care at JLNM Hospital here as Health Department has failed to upgrade the institution to make it referral facility.
Sources told Greater Kashmir that the hospital has dearth of Medical Officers (Assistant Surgeons) but administration was unmoved over the issue. “The hospital is in need of more than 30 doctors including super-specialists in different departments that affects the patient-care badly,” they said.
According to insiders, the Medical Officers are the lifeline for any hospital to take care of patients in every department including post-surgical care unit. “But the officials are acting as mute spectators over the shortage,” they said.
“Nearly 80 posts, including paramedical, nursing and class-IV, are vacant in the hospital and the present staff is unable to cater to the huge rush of patients,” sources said.
They said there are around 21 NRHM posts vacant in the hospital including 4 medical officers and 10 staff nurses.
An official wishing anonymity said the health department has failed to create additional posts to look after the growing patient rush. Official figures suggest that the hospital receives more than 2000 patients daily.
“Government just builds wards, it doesn’t think who will run those wards,” the official said sarcastically.
The state’s Health Department, sources said, has provided some specialist doctors including cardiologists, endocrinologists and gastroenterologists to the hospital, however, due to lack of Medical Officers and paramedics they are unable to deliver properly. “This further aggravates the problem,” sources said.
In addition to the staff, the hospital immediately requires ECHO, CT scan and Digital X-ray machines, and other surgical equipment to run the specialty units smoothly. “They slit you, stitch you, and then leave you on the mercy of your attendants,” a patient in the post-surgical ward said.
Attendants allege that only one Medical Officer remains available in the hospital after 4.00 pm. Patients at the OPD waiting room said the ticket counter of the hospital closes at 1.00 pm.
“We often return without consultation or treatment in the afternoon,” said a patient.
Despite being a government hospital, the OPD at JLNM has become much like a private clinic where you have a specific time fixed for the appointments. “My brother lives nearby, I had not send him early in the morning to get the token,” said Mubeen.
“Doctors in the Out Patient Department pack up their bags even before 2.00 pm,” alleged another patient. “Some leave for their homes, while others gear up for another round at their private clinics.”
When contacted, the Deputy Medical Superintendent of JLNM Hospital, Dr Iqbal confirmed the staff and equipment shortage in the hospital as per its upgradation pattern as a referral hospital. “As a district hospital the hospital has adequate staff but we are not catering to the huge rush. We have already written to the higher ups about our requirement. Hopefully, we will get the required staff and equipment soon,” he said.
However, he denied the allegation about non-availability of doctors in the evening hours. “I will try to look into the matter,” he added.

Lastupdate on : Sat, 8 Dec 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sat, 8 Dec 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sun, 9 Dec 2012 00:00:00 IST

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