With only 40% staff, South Kashmir’s premier maternity, childcare hospital has to handle over 1 lakh patients a year

With only  40% staff, South Kashmir’s premier maternity, childcare hospital has to handle over 1 lakh patients a year

ANANTNAG: The Maternity and Childcare Hospital Anantnag, the premier facility in south Kashmir for gynecology and pediatric cases, is battling severe staff and space crunch.
Catering to the patients from all four districts of south Kashmir and parts of Jammu, the hospital only has 40 per cent of its staff strength available.
The official figures accessed by Kashmir Reader show that the hospital only has nine gynecologists available against the requirement for14 of them. And of them, seven have been posted at the hospital as ‘attachment’.
The hospital, as per the records, only16 has medical officers against the need for 25, while it has only four anesthetists against the required number of eight. Posting of nine of is on the basis of ‘deployment’.
There is no radiologist in the hospital to see more than 200 USG requests received daily, the records show.
The hospital, as per the sources, has deputed an X-Ray technician on the job.
The numbers are no better in terms of the hospital’s paramedical staff either.
As per the figures, the hospital has only 13 staff nurses and five FMPHWs against the requirement for 20 and 18 of them, respectively.
All FMPHWs have been posted at hospital ‘attachment’.
Instead of eight theater assistants required by the hospital, only four are available, two of them as ‘attachment’.
The hospital, the figures suggest, has four pharmacists, 10 nursing orderlies (NOs), and six laboratory technicians against the required numbers of 10, 15, and10, respectively.
Besides the staff shortage, the hospital is battling space crunch as well.
According to insiders in the hospital, the labour and surgical wards of the hospital have to accommodate at least 20 patients in the facility that is sufficient just for eight. To accommodate the patients, the hospital authorities have even placed the beds in corridors, leaving little room for the people to move around.
A doctor posted in the hospital said the situation hasn’t improved in the past 13 years.
“About 13 years ago, the hospital was detached from the district hospital, and given the status of a full-fledged hospital. But the manpower remains the same as it was 13 years ago,” the doctor told Kashmir Reader.
He said the authorities didn’t bother to create new posts.
More than one lakh patients were registered in OPD and IPD of the hospital last year, and 7,000 surgeries were conducted by its maternity wing.
Another doctor posted in the hospital said the hospital authorities have sent several proposals to the higher-ups for increase in the staff, but in vain.
“How can you expect a better healthcare when you have just a dozen medicos to look after over one lakh patients a year?” he asked.
Director health services, Kashmir, Dr Sameer Matoo did not respond to repeated calls from Kashmir Reader.