It’s not just white coats that doctors at the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh, need to carry with them to an operation theatre; they also need to have their own pair of slippers. Unlike most hospitals, the institute doesn’t provide slippers to surgeons and anaesthesiologists working in operation theatres.
The problem is common in all operation theatres, but the situation is worse in the emergency operation theatre. A senior surgeon, who wished not to be named, said resident doctors find it difficult to arrange the slippers in the emergency ward.
The senior doctors still manage the slippers, but the resident doctors have to carry their own pair of slippers. “Just like stethoscope, carrying a pair of slippers has become a part of our lifestyle at the institute,” said a resident doctor.
According to microbiologists, it is a serious matter. “If somebody carries any article from outside to the operation theatre, it can lead to infection. The practice must be discouraged,” a senior microbiologist from the institute said.
As if this was not enough, even the linen given to doctors in the operation theatres is “one size fits all”. President of the Faculty Association of the PGIMER Dr TD Yadav said same size linen is offered in the operation theatre to doctors and other staff. “To provide right-fit clothes are the bare minimum the institute administration can do for the surgeons,” said Dr Yadav.
“I have been to various international institutes where linen offered is generally of three sizes —large, medium and small.
So surgeons can pick whichever fits them. Even some government institutes get the linen stitched from tailors for surgeons,” said Dr Yadav.
He said the association had also given a representation in this regard to the PGIMER director and he agreed to solve the linen issue.
It is also a known fact that the linen offered to the surgeons in the operation theatre is sometimes torn and often without buttons. Doctors are found using leukoplast tape to fix the linen.