Anantnag: Locals miffed at shifting of maternity hospital

SHABIR AHMAD

ANANTNAG: The people of this south Kashmir district have questioned the wisdom of the authorities of shifting only the gynaecology section of the maternity and child hospital (MCH) from Sherbagh to
Janglat Mundi and have asked them to decide the matter once and for all. The authorities after shifting of the district hospital from old building to new 300 bedded building block few months ago decided to shift the MCH to the old building. However last week when the authorities began shifting the hospital, the move was opposed by the people running medical shops and other business establishments in Sherbag locality forcing the authorities to stop shifting paediatric section. “It is irony that that gynaecology section of the hospital is functioning at Janglat Mundi for last one week while as the special neonatal care unit (SNCU) continues to function at Sherbagh. The
unwise move by the authorities has put the lives of new borns needing special care at risk,” a delegation of the people told Kashmir Reader. “My sister delivered a baby through caesarian at Janglat Mundi where the gynaecology section of the MCH has been shifted. The doctors after
examining the baby suggested that he be kept in SNCU. So we had to immediately rush to Sherbagh and on way we were stopped at two places for checking by forces. It is totally unwise on part of authorities to gynaecology section and SNCU at two places,” said Gowher Ahmad.
He said that authorities should take a final decision wether to shift the hospital or not. “If they want to shift the hospital they should do it completely and if they don’t want to shift it for some reasons
they should immediately get back the gynae section to Sherbagh so that the lives of neonates in need of special care are not put in danger,” Ahmad said.
Official sources said that the issue of the shifting of the hospital is being politicized. “One party wants the hospital to function at Sherbag only while as the other wants it to be shifted. The top health authorities who had directed the local authorities to shift the hospital prefer to be silent now asking the local officers of the department to sort out the issue at local level only,” sources said.
Meanwhile south Kashmir civil society (SKCS), has asked the authorities to address the concerns of the traders running their shops and business establishments in Sherbagh. “The livelihood of hundreds of traders will get affected if the hospital is shifted to old DH building Janglat Mundi. Most of them have availed loans from various banks for their trade. So the authorities should take traders-friendly decision over the shifting of hospital,” said a civil society member,
Bashir Ahmad Indrabi.”Maternity hospital is very overcrowded and lack of space is adding to the messy state of health here. If authorities want to provide relief to the people of south Kashmir they should set up seperate maternity hospital at Janglat Mundi,” said a trader, Suhail Ahmad adding ‘Changing the location of the existing hospital with different sections functioning at different place will only worsen things.”
Director health services, Kashmir, Dr Saleem-ul-Rehman and Dr Fazil Ali Kochak did not respond to the repeatf phone calls. However, medical superintendent, MCH, Dr Abdul Majid Mirab refused to comment on the issue saying ‘It is up to the higher ups of the department to decide the matter. We have to abide by their directive.”

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