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Lack of machines hits patient care, research at PGIMER

Awaiting CT scanners, high-end endoscopy machines for two years
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By Amanjeet Singh Salyal, Chandigarh
PUBLISHED ON DEC 11, 2019 01:07 AM IST

The Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh, has failed to procure advanced machines for complex cardiac structural procedures, CT scans and high-end endoscopy from more than two years.

Sources said that procurement of the machines has been delayed due to administrative inertia as procurement units of the institute have not been able to finalise the specifications and repeated modification requests by stakeholders have elongated the
process.

Despite budgetary allocations for cardiac digital fluoroscopy- composite interventional lab and CT scans, high-end endoscopy machines have not been purchased which has hindered the patient care and research
activities.

The composite interventional lab for advanced cardiac centre will be helpful in decreasing the time for patients undergoing angiography.

“Patients have to wait for a long time to get important tests done before angiography is performed, however, with the purchase of an advanced machine, the pre-tests can be conducted on the spot and patients will be able to get treatment at the earliest,” a senior faculty member said.

“The equipment will also be less harmful for the doctors and staff as less radiation is released from them as compared to the ones presently in use,” the faculty member said.

According to the officials in PGIMER administration, an order for cardiac digital fluoroscope was placed in March 2017 and the process was routed through an open tender.

But the hospital administration is still in the process of revising technical specifications after objections have been received from stakeholders, including faculty members and bidders.

TENDER PROCESS SCRAPPED TWICE

The tender process has also been scrapped twice. During the first time in November last year, a single bid was received and the second tender was floated similarly with modifications.

For the second time also, a single bid was received and the cardiology department head was asked to prepare a technical bid evaluation statement which was sent to the core technical committee (CTC) for the decision to open price bids.

The CTC had asked to seek approval on the technical bid evaluation system from all unit heads of the department which is still pending.

Similarly, for the CT Scan machine which would cater to the patients at paediatric and cardiac centres, the process was started in April 2018.

The tenders, however, have been scrapped twice to incorporate more features and issues concerning FDA guidelines.

A senior faculty member on the condition of anonymity said critical patients admitted in the centres were not being recommended to conduct the necessary CT Scans because it involves shifting them to Nehru Hospital.

“The issue is that a patient needs to wait for 6-9 months for the process to get completed,” a senior faculty member said.

PGIMER director Dr Jagat Ram said, “We are sorting it out. We are spending money and have to make sure that we get the best thing. We are not sitting on it.” “The process is on. We just want to make sure that procurement is made according to the laws laid down which is why it is taking some time. We will expedite the process and machines will be procured at the earliest,” he said

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