Only 11 doctors on permanent basis, influential docs halt recruitments
SRINAGAR: The government has turned the ‘Super-specialty Hospital’ into an extension of the OPD for senior doctors of the Shri Maharaja Hari Singh (SMHS) Hospital, as it hasn’t bothered to recruit fresh staff for the institute to provide the promised specialised healthcare.
According to official sources, senior SMHS Hospital doctors with political clout are presently running the affairs of the Super-specialty Hospital (SSH), Shireen Bagh, in the absence of a separate faculty for it.
“The senior doctors of SMHS hospital have halted the recruitment process of specialist doctors and administrators for SSH so they can extended their OPDs there,” the sources said.
A senior official in Government Medical College (GMC) Srinagar told Kashmir Reader that there are presently only 11 doctors on permanent basis at the hospital, working to run nine super-specialty departments.
“Others are recruited on temporary or academic arrangement basis. They have no powers to run the hospital’s affairs, which is affecting its healthcare services despite huge funds being allocated for it,” he said.
The SSH’s departments are being run by doctors of the SMHS Hospital, according to sources.
“It is affecting the already-overburdened General Hospital which receives a huge patient flow from across J&K,” said another official.
According to sources, only one department, Gastroenterology, has started admitting patients referred from SMHS and other GMC Srinagar hospitals.
“Other departments are running OPD services only for select patients. Most of them come with recommendations from various heads of department or some politician or bureaucrat,” they said.
GMC Srinagar resident doctors said they were being forced to stretch their duty hours ever since the SSH started partial functioning.
“Most of the inpatient and post-operative care is being looked after by resident doctors as there is an acute staff shortage. Patients are being operated on in the existing SMHS Hospital infrastructure,” said a senior resident, wishing anonymity.
As per official documents, there is only one faculty member in the Neurosurgery department, Dr SyedShafiqAlam, who has been recruited as assistant professor. But he is unable to extend super-specialist services.
Similarly, assistant professor Dr Abdul Rashid Kumar is running the Paediatric Surgery department; Urology is looked after by Dr Syed Sajjad Nazir (assistant professor) and Dr Tanveer Iqbal (lecturer); Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery by Dr Shabir Iqbal (professor working on academic arrangement basis) and Dr Mushtaq Ahmad Bhat (lecturer on academic arrangement); Cardiology by Dr Khalid Mohi-U-Din (assistant professor), Dr Bashir A. Naikoo (assistant professor) and Dr Nazir Ahmad Lone I/C (assistant professor); Nephrology by Dr Tajamul Hussain (lecturer); Gastroenterology by Dr Showkat Ahmed Kadla (professor), Dr Muhammad Yaseen Mujoo and Dr Shabir Ahmad Shiekh (both lecturers on academic arrangement) and Neurology by Dr Bashir Ahmad Sanai I/C (assistant professor).
Dr Mohit Arora, who was appointed as lecturer for the Department of Cardio Vascular Thoracic Surgery (CVTS), has recently been transferred to Jammu, leaving the department craving a specialist.
Sources said the SSH recruitment process has been halted following intervention by the senior faculty of GMC Srinagar.
“The hospital administration has sent hundreds of posts to recruiting agencies including SSB and PSC for the appointment. But the senior faculty of SMHS Hospital objected to it and used influence in the government to halt the process,” the sources said.
According to the sources, the influential doctors didn’t allow the appointment of a full-fledged administrator for the SSH.
“The hospital administration is being run remotely by Medical Superintendent, CD Hospital, Dr Nazir Chowdhary. He is also facing pressure due to the politics in the Super-specialty Hospital,” said a doctor.