ANANTNAG: As Kashmir valley shivers with cold, the central heating system (CHS) in major hospitals of south Kashmir remains non-functional. While the heating system in some hospitals remains defunct since its installation, the authorities have no funds to run it where it can make the CHS operational.
At district hospital Anantnag, one of the major hospitals of the region, the central heating system (CHS) has not been put to use even for a single day during last three years due to the shortage of funds, insiders say.
“Since the hospital was shifted to new building three year ago, we have not seen the CHS being put to use for a single day. Instead the authorities have installed heat convectors in IPD wards and are using gas heaters in the OPD to provide heating facility to the patients,” hospital sources told Kashmir Reader.
They cited the shortage of funds as the reason for not making CHS operational.
“As per the estimate it requires at least one crore rupees to run the central heating system for few months. Hospital on its own cannot afford such a huge amount,” said an insider.
A doctor posted in the hospital questioned the wisdom of the authorities to install central heating system in the hospital at the cost of crores of rupees and then failing to make it functional.
“Installing electric wall heaters is no alternative to the CHS as they cannot maintain temperature in the wards. In the OPD you can see gas heaters being used as a heating facility which can prove dangerous anytime,” the doctor said.
Medical superintendent Dr Abdul Majid Mirab said the dysfunctional CHS was due to pending completion of the entire hospital project.
“Actually it is a 300 bedded hospital and only one block of the hospital has been completed. We are waiting for other blocks of the hospital to get completed. Once they are completed we will make the CHS of all the blocks operational at a time,” MS said.
He said the hospital management is waiting for the mechanical instructions of JKPCC for making this heating system operational. “We have written to JKPCC officials for inspection and instructions so that we can make it operational but they have not responded yet,” MS said.
However, in district hospital Kulgam constructed at the cost of around 40 crore rupees few years back, the central heating system remains completely defunct. “The central heating system of the hospital was rendered defunct only a month after it was made operational few years back,” hospital sources said.
Though the authorities in the hospital have installed ACs in medical wards as an alternative but there is no heating arrangement in OPD.
“Hundreds of patients approach the hospital OPD every day and they shiver while waiting for their turn due to the non-availability of heating facility. If crores have been spent on CHS facility here why the authorities cannot set it right,” said a paramedic posted in the hospital.
Medical superintendent of the hospital however blamed the agency which installed the heating system in the hospital for not setting it right.
“I have assumed the charge here recently. But all the previous medical superintendents have written to the construction company, JKPCC about the defunct heating system. “The company has failed to respond,” MS said.
Similarly in Emergency hospital Qazigund, the authorities are using has heaters to warm the IPD wards.
Sources in the hospital also cited shortage of funds as the reason for the CHS not being operational.