Can you imagine that a hospital meant to cater to hundreds of needy patients is not equipped enough to carry out a simple urine examination. This may seem absurd, but it is true.
We are not talking about a hospital that is located in some remote area of the Valley, but the hospital is located in the heart of the City, however, the apathy and lack of concern by the health department has turned the hospital into a non-functional entity.
We are talking about the Government Leprosy Hospital, which is lacking the basic facility of laboratory which is an important part of any hospital. The patients who come here for treatment are facing hardships and they are forced to visit Health Centre at Lalbazar for getting minor tests like a urine examination done.
The families living in the leper colony are mostly living much below poverty line. The patients who have been dependent for every need on the government have been left in lurch as the only hospital catering to their health care needs is in dire straits.
“The patients are forced to get the tests done from private clinics or at the Health Centre Lal Bazar as the lab in the Leper hospital is not equipped enough to carry out the simplest of tests,” sources said.
The residents are demanding that the health department should establish a laboratory where at least basic investigations like Urine and blood tests are done.
When the matter of establishing a laboratory at the hospital was brought into the notice of Chief Medical Officer (CMO), Sringar, Dr. Dildar Mir, he said that we cannot afford and it is not possible to establish a laboratory there, “there are only 80 patients living in the colony and it’s not possible to establish a lab for them, and the hospital is meant to cater to the needs of only 80 or so patients.”
The hospital is running with a staff strength of 12 persons, which includes a Medical Officer as well, however, sources revealed that “some of the employees deputed in the hospital are being paid for just remaining idle.” Interestingly, the health department is turning a blind eye towards the dead wood at the hospital and instead of paying huge salaries to them, the health department can give a serious thought over establishing a laboratory at the hospital, which seems to be a necessity.
There is a an ambulance stationed at the hospital which is used to take the patients to SKIMS, SMHS or JLNM, Rainawara in case of any emergency, sources are saying that the same ambulance is used to ferry patients to get Urine and Blood tests done at adjacent hospitals, costing much to the department that is spending huge sums on the supply of petrol for getting the simple examinations done.
Moreover, the patients living in the colony, whenever they need are asked to get the investigation tests like MRI and CT scan done from private clinics, which usually cost up to 2000-3000 rupees.
“The amount may seem meagre, but is something that cannot be afforded by us,” says a patient, Abdul Rahim. “Image if we are not in a position to get a blood test done from the market, how can we spend 3000 rupees of MRI or CT Scan,” said Abdul Rahim.
CMO, Srinagar, however, had a different take on this issue, he said that whenever possible when get such tests done for these patients, “we have been doing this whenever possible, however, it cannot be done all the time,” he said.