The lone Maternity and Childcare Hospital (M&CCH) here was recently upgraded as associated hospital of Government Medical College (GMC) Anantnag. The institute is ideally meant to provide round-the-clock maternity and childcare facilities to entire south Kashmir which is spread over four districts.
But the hospital, which runs from a dilapidated building constructed decades ago lacks most of the facilities, forcing doctors to refer even minor cases which can be handled at the hospital to Srinagar health institutes which are already overburdened.
A doctor said the hospital does not have a blood bank, ventilators for running ICU, analyzers and laparoscope – the facilities crucial for the child and mother care.
“The blood- bank is an important component of obstetrics but ironically the institute still lacks it,” said the doctor, adding the blood storage unit was defunct for long time.
Highlighting the callousness of the authorities the blood units are stored in refrigerators, which according to the doctor puts to risk the lives of pregnant woman and infants.
Another doctor said the hospital does not have an Intensive and Neonatal Care Units (INCU) although a specialist neonatologist is posted here.
In absence of the facility the doctor’s services remain unutilized as newborns are often referred to the city hospital.
“This is one of the major reasons for infant mortalities at the hospital,” asserted the doctor.
The hospital has a “biochemistry lab”. But it does not have an analyzer – the basic requirement for running the lab.
“We only have CBC analyzer and that too does not function properly. The investigations like KFT, LFT, lipid profile tests are done manually,” said the doctor.
The patients have to pay between Rs 800 to Rs 1000 to get these tests done at private diagnostic laboratories.
The patients in need of laparoscope surgeries are referred to Srinagar as the hospital caters to only obstetrics requirements – LSCS and ligation.
The patients in need of gynecological procedures like elective hysterectomy are not admitted at the hospital owing to the lack of the machinery.
There is no Doppler facility and the patients have to spend Rs 1,500 at private diagnostic centers to get the test done.
“There is even no facility for carrying out urine and blood cultures at the hospital. The tests cost around Rs 600 at the private centers,” the doctor said.
The Principal GMC Anantnag Dr Showkat Jeelani admitted lack of facilities at the hospital, but gave a bizarre response to address them.
“The issues can be addressed only once the hospital is shifted at a suitable place,” he said, adding the hospital was functioning from an old dilapidated building which lacks adequate space for installing the facilities.
The Principal, however, said they have started conducting hysterectomies at the hospital.