Those visiting the Shaheed Babu Labh Singh Civil Hospital, Jalandhar, will soon get some relief from the problem of overcrowding as the health department will develop the adjacent Red Cross Society building as a serai where attendants of patients would be able to stay. The building was transferred to the health department recently following which the department's engineering wing started renovation work.
Four cabins (small rooms) will be built on the ground floor of which two single-bed facilities will be given to attendants.
The first floor, which has a big hall, will be wholly renovated small beds will be put there.
On February 5, the Punjab health systems corporation (PHSC) had invited tenders for repair and renovation of the serai in the hospital complex through advertisements in various newspapers at a cost of Rs 25 lakh.
A senior official said after the renovation and repair work came to end which may take three months, the department will publicise the facility inside the hospital so that attendants could use it.
He said that the building would be exclusively for attendants and none else would be allowed to avail the lodging facility there. Nominal rent will be charged and the exact amount would be decided by the higher authorities, he added.
Attendants and visitors usually lead to overcrowding at the hospital, which results in unhygienic conditions and blockage of sewerage.
The hospital authorities had approached the health minister in this regard apprising him that a large number of attendants, especially in burns, genealogical and ICU wards, pose a risk of infection to patients.
On January 24, the health minister had announced to build a new 'serai' for attendants with a view to tackling the problem of the presence of a large number of attendants at various wards of the hospital.