Six months later, elevator and ramp still incomplete
KULGAM: The elevator and ramp of the new In-Patient Department (IPD) at Kulgam district hospital is still incomplete more than six months after Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti cancelled her proposed visit to inaugurate the new building.
The unfinished elevator and ramp facilities are keeping the hospital from realising the full potential of its Operating Theater (OT), much to the discomfort of the people dependent on it.
The 60-bed IPD section in the hospital’s new building was scheduled to be inaugurated by the Chief Minister on 22 August 2017 while she was on a one-day tour to the south Kashmir district.
Mufti was to inaugurate the second and third floors of the new building which house the OT and the IPD wards in that order.
But the lack of an elevator and a ramp made the “haste to inaugurate the building” look awkward.
“How were they going to run the OT and the IPD without an elevator and a ramp? Were the patients supposed to fly?” a doctor at the hospital had told Kashmir Reader at the time.
Her visit was cancelled at the last minute despite all arrangements being in place at the hospital after local lawmaker M Y Tarigami also raised concerns regarding the incomplete facilities.
Following the cancellation of Mufti’s visit, top administrative and health officials visited the hospital and instructed the speeding up of work on the said facilities.
“Funds were also earmarked and I guess released as well for speeding up of the elevator and ramp construction,” a source at the hospital told Kashmir Reader.
More than six months have passed since then, but the facilities are yet to be completed, putting a question mark on the quality of the ongoing construction work.
Sources in the hospital said that the completion of these facilities would have been a source of ease for the patients of the area.
“We have a 72-bed post-operative facility. Surgeries are conducted keeping in view the post-operative space available at the hospital. Had the new facility been functional, the surgeries would have almost doubled here,” sources said.
They said that the authorities had failed to make the contractor speed up the process in the public interest.
“Instead he is taking his own sweet time,” the sources lamented.
The hospital’s Medical Superintendent, Dr G M Bhat, acknowledged that the facilities were still incomplete despite the building being ready for use.
“We have even furnished the beds in there. I am told and I hope that the elevator and the ramp will get completed within a week’s time,” Bhat told Kashmir Reader.
He also agreed that the new IPD block will enhance the hospital’s capacity for conducting surgeries by around a hundred per cent.