Patients visiting District Hospital here are denied treatment for the past one week. Reason: The authorities have closed Out-Patient Department (OPD) and decided to “treat” only COVID19 patients.
The move has left non-COVID patients fuming. “I am suffering from severe eye ailment but I was denied treatment at the hospital,” said Ghulam Hassan from a remote village of the district.
Hassan visited the Ophthalmology OPD twice last week but had to return disappointed after the doctors declined to treat him.
Likewise, the patients visiting medicine, surgery, ENT, Psychiatry OPDs were also being denied treatment. “After being refused consultation for my liver ailment, I had to see a doctor at the private clinic,” said Aabid Hussain. Hussain said the hospital authorities should clear if there was any written order for treating COVID patients only.
The doctors at the hospital acknowledged that no written order for treating COVID patients only has been issued. However, they said the “directions” were “verbally” conveyed to them Medical Superintendent of the hospital to treat only COVID patients.
“There are around 45 doctors posted in the hospital, 35 of them are attending to coronavirus patients only,” said a doctor. He said not more than fifty patients are admitted in the isolation facility of the hospital.
“Only respiratory OPD meant to detect COVID19 cases is operational,” he said. “Apart from that emergency cases are being treated through casualties.”
Many doctors at the hospital have been deputed to quarantine facility set up by the administration at the College, said another medico. “It is an irony that despite ICMRC guidelines of home quarantine for asymptomatic patients, they have been kept there,” the doctor said.
He said even the surgeons have been put on COVID duty. “The doctors who should have been attending to patients at the hospital have to be there for no reason, thus hitting the patient care,” he lamented.
Medical Superintendent, Dr Jameel Mir did not respond to repeated calls for his comment over the issue while Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Pulwama, Dr Haseena Mir feigned ignorance over it. “I don’t have any knowledge about it, but will surely look into it,” she said.