Tribune News Service
Shimla, May 12
Non-Covid health services in Shimla hospitals are being affected due to the rapid spread of the pandemic. The Civil Hospital at Rampur, which caters to the people of four districts, is without an anaesthetist. The lone anaesthetist has been sent on deputation to the Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital (DDUH), which is packed to capacity with Covid patients.
No surgeries can be performed
- The lone anaesthetist has been sent on deputation to the Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital (DDUH), which is packed to capacity with Covid patients.
- In the absence of an anaesthetist, the hospital will not be able to perform surgeries, neither emergency nor elective.
“Three doctors have been sent to the DDU Hospital on deputation — one each from the medicine, surgery and anaesthesia departments. We have enough doctors of medicine and surgeons but no anaesthesist at present,” said Dr Suneel Sharma, Medical Superintendent of the Civil Hospital.
In the absence of an anaesthetist, the hospital will not be able to perform surgeries, neither emergency nor elective.
Sources said the hospital had started referring expectant mothers to the Kamla Nehru Hospital (KNH), Shimla. It takes more than four hours to reach Shimla and it’s also dangerous to travel at a time when the pandemic is surging. Besides, referrals will put additional burden on the already burdened KNH, which deals with all gynaecology and delivery cases of the city and from peripheral areas. “There has been an increase in the number of pregnancy cases of late. We are burdened and short of staff as well but we are somehow managing,” said Dr Ambika Chauhan, Medical Superintendent, KNH.
“A hospital without an anaesthetist is merely a dispensary. All that doctors can do is to attend OPDs and refer patients needing surgeries to another hospital with an anaesthetist,” said a doctor.
Local residents have also expressed resentment over the deputation of three doctors, especially the anaesthetist. They are demanding that at least the anaesthetist be repatriated immediately. “What will happen if an emergency cesarean delivery or trauma-related surgery needs to be done? How is the hospital going to handle it?” asked LR Thakur, a Rampur resident.
He said that the Rampur hospital caters to a vast population of four districts. “People come here from Karsog in Mandi, Anni-Nirmand areas of Kullu, besides Kinnaur and Shimla,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Rogi Kalyan Samiti of the Rampur hospital, too, feels that the hospital services will be adversely affected in the absence of an anaesthetist. “Imagine if an ulcer in someone’s stomach bursts. He will have to travel for five hours for treatment at a hospital in Shimla,” it said.