Kupwara: Even as the three ministers from Kupwara district have been inducted in the current dispensation, the shortage of infrastructure, staff and other basic facilities in the hospitals here has come under severe criticism by the patients.
The claims of the state government to improve the health sector have fallen flat on the ground in the district with locals claiming that the district has been ignored at all fronts.
The Kupwara hospital, which on papers is a Community Health Centre (CHC) has been named as District Hospital.
One of the senior doctors, wishing anonymity, said the hospital is in a dilapidated condition and it was becoming difficult for the management to run it. “Without proper staff, we are not able to tackle the rush of the patient. We have over 1300 OPD’s daily,” he said.
He added that due to the lack of health care facilities in the hospital they often face flak from the patients and their attendants. “But, what can we do when we lack facilities here? We are compelled to make referrals. Only patients and doctors are sufferers of this mismanagement,” he added.
Sources said that the Kupwara Hospital at present has no pediatrician and the doctors at the hospital refer such patients to Srinagar hospitals – which are located 100 kilometers away.
Another doctor claimed that the hospital authority has failed to make a toilet and night rooms for doctors even for the patients at the causality. “We are facing a lot of hardships here,” he said.
He added that lack of cleanliness is another problem faced by the hospital, more than a year ago they changed bed sheets.
Sources said that the patients usually face inconvenience due to the unpunctuality of doctors and paramedical staff at District hospital Kupwara.
They said that the staff of the hospital arrives late in the morning and during lunch break to perform their duties.
Meanwhile, the non-availability of medicines adds to the miseries, inhabitants said. They added that the doctors prescribe only those medicines, which are available with the chemists ‘commissioned’ with these doctors.
Patients said that due to the acute medicine shortage in the hospital, the patients are being forced to buy them from the market. “The bulk of the medicines are supplied to the hospital stores but patients are being suggested to buy these medicines from the market,” said one of the attendants.
A Poor female patient from Lolab Valley said that she had come for treatment in the hospital where she was asked to get USG done from outside as the staff was not available in the hospital.
Despite repeated attempts, Health Minister Bali Bhagat was not available for his comments.
However, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Kupwara, Dr Prahlad Singh said, “We will never tolerate such carelessness. We will definitely take action against the erring employees if found guilty”.