The district hospital in Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s home district Sehore is in a pathetic state where one bed is shared by three patients, reveals HT Team’s reality check.
Shockingly, the hospital, which is hardly 35 kilometres from Bhopal, has no ventilators, attendants, incubators and other basic equipment to handle emergencies. Senior doctor BK Chaturvedi said this was the reason why all accident and complicated cases were referred to Bhopal’s Hamidia hospital.
District collector Sudam Khade attributed this to over a year’s delay in the construction of a new hospital for the district. He said the 250-bed new hospital, which is primarily a trauma centre, would be inaugurated within 20 days. “With new infrastructure and greater space here, things will definitely get better,” he said.
However, the overcrowded district hospital seems to be an open invitation to infections and other risks. The maternity ward is identified by inconsolable cries of newborn babies in the absence of a hospital attendant. Even the air conditioners in the ICU are lying defunct.
The condition of the female and children wards was the worst. One bed catered to three patients at a time with none of the 37 doctors on duty could be seen visiting the wards. This ward has two nurses who have to attend to over 100 patients a day.
The district hospital has six ambulances. But, only two can be used for the general patients. The rest are meant for pregnancy cases under the Janani Suraksha scheme.
Health minister’s backyard too lacks facilities
The sick newborn care unit (SNCU) of the district hospital in Datia, the constituency of state health minister Narottam Mishra, lacks ventilators, a reality check by HT team reveals.
An on-duty doctor requesting anonymity said, “The SNCU has 20 beds, but we have to manage the pressure by adjusting the radiant warmer, a specially designed bed for newborns, on a twin-sharing basis.”
“The trauma centre functions only on paper, as all accident cases are referred to either Jhansi or Gwalior in the absence of a neuro-surgeon or a specialised doctor,” he said.
The hospital is also facing shortage of doctors, as out of 41 sanctioned posts, only 17 were appointed. Similarly, against 52 sanctioned posts of medical officers, 46 were appointed.
Civil surgeon Dr MS Pansari, an orthopedist and responsible for the trauma centre, said more than 300 drugs were available.
Jabalpur: No end to patients’ suffering
The Seth Govind Das Hospital, formerly known as Victoria Hospital — the district hospital in Jabalpur — has only two ambulances and both are ill-equipped. Of the two ambulances, one ambulance is engaged on VVIP duty most of the time.
A social worker, Manish Sharma, said, “I raised the issue before the health department but no action was taken.”
Chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, during his visit to Jabalpur in 2008, promised to upgrade the district hospital to 500 beds from the existing 350 beds.
However, not much has been done in this direction. Against the sanctioned 27 posts of doctors, only 14 doctors are currently working. The Phaco machine used for cataract eye operations has also been lying unused for more than one year as no trained doctor is available to run the machine.
Hospital civil surgeon Dr AK Sinha said, “We have written several times to the health department asking them to purchase new ambulances. The cost of repair of the apheresis machine is around Rs 1.50 lakh and the power to sanction funds by the civil surgeon is Rs 50,000 only. So the machine could not be repaired.”