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Dengue bites Delhi

AIIMS’ advice to patients: Don’t rush to us. Primary health care centres, state-run hospitals can treat disease, reports Jaya Shroff Bhalla.

delhi Updated: Aug 27, 2008 00:18 IST
Jaya Shroff Bhalla

Kapoor Giri, 40, is suffering from dengue.

His last recorded platelet count was 24,000. Ideally, it should be 1.5-4 lakh.

With no beds, the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has asked him to leave.

But he does not know where to go. “I came here on August 24 from Azadpur. Doctors gave me some medicines and put me on IV fluids. Now they have asked me to go to another hospital. Where do I go?” asks Giri.

“He is not stable, but there are patients with more severe symptoms whom we cannot ignore,” said a doctor. He did not wish to be named.

As the Capital and NCR areas battle a dengue-malaria outbreak, AIIMS has started turning away dengue patients, unable to cope with the rush.

“Do we have a choice? We can accommodate only so many patients. There are no vacant beds and we have run out of medicines,” a doctor said. He too did not wish to be named.

The situation on the ground is grim — no beds, no medicines and overworked doctors.

Just like Giri, Jungpura resident Atul Tiwari has also been asked to leave the hospital.

His condition is no better. “We got him here with a platelet count as low as 16,000. Yesterday he was administered platelets twice after which he has recovered a little. But now the doctors have asked us to leave. I cannot afford to get him treated at a private hospital,” his brother Luvkush Tiwari told the Hindustan Times.

“The situation cannot improve until there is a system in place to distribute the workload AIIMS handles. There has to be active effort from primary health care centres, MCD hospitals as well as state-run hospitals if we want health facilities to improve,” said Dr Kumar Harsh, president, Resident Doctors Association, AIIMS.

Dr Harsh said dengue patients require constant platelet count monitoring, bed rest and platelet dosage for speedy recovery. “This can be done at any hospital. One does not have to come all the way to AIIMS for that.”