Efforts on to procure new source for cobalt machine
MORE AND more patients can avail the benefits of cobalt machine at Cancer Hospital, M Y Hospital premises, once it gets a new source for the machine.
“We have initiated correspondence with the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC, Mumbai) regarding this issue just 4-5 days ago. The unused source from the machine discarded a few years ago and lying in the basement would be sent to Mumbai only when we get a new source,” Cancer Hospital superintendent Dr K L Gupta said.
BARC had asked the authorities concerned to discard the 1969 cobalt machine some 15 years ago. Moreover, the hospital’s basement where the machine was installed remained perennially filled with water for almost 12 years due to some untraced leak in the wall.
Presently, the hospital uses a new generation cobalt machine on the first floor that was installed in 1995. Around 90-100 patients can be treated with this facility. However, this number can increase substantially with the new source.
With active intervention and personal interest taken by divisional commissioner Ashok Das, many positive changes are taking place by way of developmental work.
Das has also asked for digging up an old well behind the Cancer Hospital building, as this may possibly be the reason for water leakage in the basement.
With the machine now free from water logging, hospital authorities are hopeful that they would be able send the unused source to BARC for replacement.
“According to a recent rule, any institution can get a new cobalt source only if the unused source is properly disposed off,” Dr Gupta said adding, “The machine would be sent to Mumbai where BARC authorities would take out the unused source and bury it deep in the ground.”
When asked how much time it would take for the new source to arrive, Dr Gupta said, “The work to pump out water from the basement is going on continuously. Correspondence with BARC, too, has been initiated and Rs 35 lakh sanctioned for the new source has also been deposited with BARC.”
“All said and done, it should take 2-3 months. We are looking forward for a quick redressal as we can then treat more and more patients with the new source,” he added.
The hospital, which was started in 1969, gets about 2,700-2,800 new patients in the OPD every year while about 35,000-40,000 patients come for follow-up annually.