Kushtia General Hospital
Healthcare limping due to lack of doctors
KUSHTIA, Apr 20: The 250-bed Kushtia General Hospital cannot provide healthcare to the patients due to shortage of doctors and other staff, including technical ones.
There are only 32 doctors working here against 58 posts. They are providing services to 1,200 to 1,500 out-door patients daily, hospital sources said.
The hospital was upgraded to a 250-bed one from 100-bed in 2002, but new doctors and staff have not been appointed till now.
Sources said around 30-40 lakh people of Kushtia, Meherpur, Chuadanga and Rajbari districts are dependent on this hospital.
This correspondent recently visited the hospital and saw a large number of outdoor patients were waiting for treatment at the emergency department of the hospital. Only four physicians were providing service whereas at least 12/15 physicians were needed.
"How can 32 doctors ensure appropriate health service for this large number of patients?" Dr Tapas Kumar Sarkar, residential medical officer (RMO) of the hospital, asked.
A doctor has to treat around 150/200 outdoor patients every day, the RMO said, adding that he also has to treat the patients admitted at the hospital.
The RMO said there is no senior consultant at the eye, children, medicine, surgery, orthopaedic, cardiology, radiology, ENT, anaesthesia, gynaecology, pathology, and skin and sex departments.
Two X-ray machines out of four have not been working for the last four years, and two of three ambulances have been out of order for the last two years, he added.
There are also shortages of Class 3 and Class 4 employees. There are only 25 Class 4 employees out of required 55, and 33 Class 3 employees of the required 37.
There is also a shortage of technical staff in the laboratories where various tests are carried out.
Abdul Karim, 55, and Sokor Ali, 60, who came from Khajanagor of the district with severe respiratory problem and lower abdominal pain respectively, alleged that they were not getting proper treatment at the hospital because of unavailability of doctors.
The doctors were also found attending their office late and departing earlier than official time. The doctors misbehave when the patients ask them any question, they added.
The patients said shortage of medical equipment, particularly in the pathology department and operation theatre, has been posing a serious problem to the patients here.
Dr Abdul Mannan, caretaker (in-charge) of the hospital said "We have no opportunity to use prosthesis machines here in the hospital. Moreover, a four-month-old girl was referred to Faridpur General Hospital for better treatment as there is no paediatric doctor at the hospital.
Civil Surgeon (CS) Dr Nazmul Islam, admitting the prevailing crisis, said to the Daily Observer that they have no alternative to face crowd of patients, because they do not have sufficient staff.
"We have written to the higher authorities several times about the prevailing crisis at the hospital," said CS Dr Nazmul Islam, adding that they have not responded as yet.