Snowfall hits healthcare as staff disappears

Snowfall hits healthcare as staff disappears
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Srinagar: Major hospitals of Kashmir on Monday saw chaos and confusion as several staff members remained absent from the essential duties.
People faced inconvenience in most tertiary care hospitals including Lal Ded, GB Pant, Bone and Joint and SKIMS Bemina.
The absence of attendant sheds in some hospitals also forced people to return home disappointed.
In Lal Ded Hospital and SKIMS Medical College and Hospital (MC&H) Bemina, shortage of paramedical staff delayed several surgeries.
Javed Ahmad of Pulwama told Kashmir Reader that doctors at Lal Ded Hospital had to cancel the surgery of her sister due to non-availability of some staff member.
“We came to the hospital on Saturday for surgery. But, doctors informed us they cannot do surgery because some staff members were absent from the hospital due to snowfall,” he said.
The corridors of LD hospital witnessed heavy rush as the attendants had occupied it in the absence of a separate waiting space for them.
People had to suffer due to inadequate attendant sheds and heating system in the hospital.
Mehraj-ud-Din of Parimpora said the people also faced the problem as hospital wards received inadequate water supply.
“It’s really appalling that wards don’t have the adequate water supply. The patients were seen looking for water in different wards,” he said,
Deputy Medical Superintendents of LD Hospital, Dr Fara Shafi, however, claimed that hospital functioned normally.
“No surgery was canceled in the hospital. I think attendants are misinformed,” she said.
“The hospital has ample attendant sheds. I don’t think that is a problem in the hospital. The snow clearance also started early morning.”
According to sources, many surgeries were canceled in Orthopedic and Gynecology Department of SKIMS Hospital Bemina as the Operation Theaters started late in the morning due to snowfall.
“Five to six scheduled surgeries had to be canceled in SKIMS Medical College and Hospital, Bemina which lead to huge inconvenience to patients who were awaiting surgery for long,” said an employee.
The principal of the College, Dr Reyaz Untoo, however, denied the allegation that surgeries were canceled due to snowfall.
“Some surgeries were rescheduled due to some complicated surgeries which took extra time for doctors to complete,” he said.
At Bone and Joint Hospital paramedical staff disappeared from the hospital wards after 2 pm.
Patients also faced problem due to water logging in and around the hospital.
“The routine checkup of IPD patients couldn’t be done as most of the doctors reached the hospital very late. We had to call doctors from Causality ward whenever patients faced any complication,” said a nurse, wishing anonymity.
Medical Superintendent of the Hospital, Dr Abdul Rashid Badoo didn’t respond to repeated calls from this office.
In SMHS hospital, people complained about the absence of staff in Emergency department and ambulances to ferry patients back home.
“The situation was very tense around the hospital due to encounter (gunfight at Karan Nagar). We wanted to go home after the discharge of my father but hospital authorities didn’t give us ambulance to take him home. We pleaded before hospital authorities for the ambulance to ferry him. However, they refused and even misbehaved with us,” said Fayaz Ahmad of Ganderbal.
Deputy Medical Superintendent, SMHS Hospital Dr Muneer Ahmad said the functioning of the hospital remained affected due to gunfight at Karan Nagar area.
“People and staff couldn’t move freely due to encounter. Otherwise, we didn’t face any problem due to snow,” he said.
Medical Superintendent of GB Pant hospital Dr Kawarjeet Singh said that OPD services remained affected in the hospital due to snowfall and admission were also reduced.
“Other services were running normally. We have also put ambulances and other vehicles in action to handle any exigency.”