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HindustanTimes Fri,19 Sep 2014

It's a mixed bag for the sector

Himabindu Reddy, Hindustan Times   December 27, 2012
First Published: 01:39 IST(27/12/2012) | Last Updated: 01:40 IST(27/12/2012)

The year 2012 was a mixed bag of achievements and failures in the health sector.

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Dengue cases on the rise
The Aedes mosquito infected 469 persons and claimed one life. The dengue menace gave a tough time to both the patients and hospital staff. As the count of dengue cases continued to rise, the OPDs and emergencies of private and government hospitals ran out of beds. In some cases, patients had to wait for two days to get admitted.

Doctors also came across a few cases which they termed as "the rarest of the rare." Of the five such cases, two were of pregnant women wherein one underwent an abortion and the other a C-section surgery.

The other cases were of a 22-year-old girl who lost her vision in a case of dengue haemorrhagic fever, while a 10-year-old girl suffered multi-organ dysfunction after she tested positive for dengue.    

Dengue kept public health officials on their toes all through the year.  In 2011, the department had declared an epidemic as the dengue count had reached 156 with three deaths.

However, there was constant disparity in the figures of dengue cases provided by the health department and private hospitals. While private hospitals stated that dengue cases had crossed the 1,000 mark with six deaths, official records tagged the figure at 469 cases with one death. The health department also put the figures of malaria cases at 635 and swine flu at six.

Two new facilities opened
Fortis Memorial Research Institute (FMRI), Sector 44, was launched on October 29. It is a 1,000-bed facility with 400 doctors and more than 1,000 nurses. FMRI's specialties are cardiology, orthopaedics, organ transplant, robotic surgery, cosmetic surgery and stem cell therapy.  St Stephens in DLF Phase-3 was launched on November 30. The city also got its stem cell bank - LifeCell International - on December 18 at Manesar. The facility can hold up to two lakh stem cell samples and will be available for umbilical cord stem cell banking and menstrual stem cell banking.

Sought-after healthcare hub
Anti-corruption crudaser Anna Hazare was admitted at Medanta - The Medicity in January this year. He was treated for hypertension and blood pressure. He was again admitted in the ICU on December 7 after he complained of weakness and acidity. One of Ponty Chadha's security guards was also admitted in a city hospital following the shootout in South Delhi on November 17. Former prime minister IK Gujral died at Medanta on November 30. He was being treated for acute pulmonary oedema and was on ventilator.

80 foreign patients died at hospitals
Eighty foreign nationals died at various multi-specialty hospitals this year. A majority of them were from Iraq, Afghanistan and Nigeria. All of them were admitted for tertiary care ailments. On an average, more than 20, 000 foreigners visit the city for tertiary treatments every year. In 2011, as many as 80 foreign nationals had arrived to seek medical treatment.

Civil hospital outsources staff
The Class 4 employees at city hospitals are being outsourced. This reduces accountability and allows the influx of unskilled workers to deal with patients. Lessons need to be learnt from the ICU malfunction at the Sushrut Trauma Centre in New Delhi. At the Civil Hospital, the oxygen supply facility is managed by home-trained Class 4 staff.

Civil hospital for NABH accreditation  
In an effort to meet the standards of the National Accreditation Board of Health (NABH); the Civil Hospital has been upgrading its departments such as paramedics, sanitation, security, computer operators etc.


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