Delhi’s GB Pant Hospital will get MRI machine after 3-year wait
The 735-bed hospital, which allows only serious patients referred by other hospitals in their out-patient clinic, sees a footfall of nearly 3,000 patients daily.Updated: Mar 05, 2019 08:38 IST
In another three months, the biggest Delhi government-run super speciality hospital, Govind Ballabh Pant hospital in central Delhi, will finally get a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machine. The MRI machine in the hospital had not been working since February, 2016.
The 735-bed hospital, which allows only serious patients referred by other hospitals in their out-patient clinic, sees a footfall of nearly 3,000 patients daily. There are over 2,000 admissions in GB Pant Hospital every month. The neighbouring Lok Nayak hospital is the only one of the 34 Delhi government hospitals that has an MRI machine.
“MRI scan is a basic diagnostic tool and we need it for almost all of our patients as the hospital specialises in heart, neuro and gastrointestinal surgeries. We either refer patients to the private laboratories under the Delhi government’s free diagnostic schemes or we send them to Lok Nayak Hospital or other government hospitals if they are unable to pay for it at private centres,” said a doctor from the hospital on condition of anonymity.
The tender for purchasing a MRI machine has been approved by Delhi government’s Central Procurement Agency. “The tender has already been approved and the new machine will likely be installed in the next three months,” said Dr Vijoy Kumar, director, Central Procurement Agency.
Meanwhile, the Delhi government’s tertiary care hospitals such as Deen Dayal Upadhyay hospital, Guru Teg Bahadur hospital, and Baba Saheb Ambedkar hospital continue to function without an MRI machine of their own.
Guru Teg Bahadur hospital, the biggest tertiary care hospital in the trans-Yamuna region which is associated with the University College of Medical Sciences, does not have an MRI machine even though it offers a three-year MD Radiology course.
To address the gaps in diagnostic services, the Delhi government in February 2017 launched a service to provide 11 radiological tests at 23 private centres that the government tied up with.
Around one lakh people have already benefited from the scheme, according to the deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia.
Initially, the government had decided to set up 5 MRI and 10 CT scan centres in public-private partnership (PPP) model.
The facilities were to run 24X7 and do any CT/ MRI scan for a head injury, trauma cases and other emergency cases within two hours and routine MRIs within six hours.
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal had tweeted, “Tenders done for 5 MRI n 10 CT Scan. They’ll come in 4 mnths. It’ll take smetime to correct decades of misgovernance,” in July 2016, after HT reported that there was a two-year wait for an MRI at the only functioning machine in Delhi government hospitals.
However, the project never took off as no company bid for the tenders.
“Initially it was thought that the radiodiagnosis companies could set up the centre and run it. But, the plan was scrapped as no one came forward. Now, we are procuring the machines for our hospital. So far, only the tender for the MRI machine in GB Pant hospital has been approved,” said Dr Kumar.
The PPP model was scrapped after the Delhi Healthcare Corporation, set up for centrally purchasing all medicines, consumables and non-medical services, went into limbo because of the tussle between the AAP government and the lieutenant governor.