Anantnag: Much to the inconvenience of patients as well as their attendants, the diagnostic laboratory here at Maternity and Child Care Hospital (MCCH) Anantnag is a mess with different sections scattered around the hospital — some of the sections hard to access for pregnant women.
Besides, there is also a shortage of staff, with only 8 employees available to cater to three different sections — night duties included.
According to sources at the hospital, a decision was taken to centralise the laboratory and it was shifted to a room near the operation theatre.
“However, the room is a small one. Not more than two people can stand in the room,” a source told Kashmir Reader. Besides, he said, the room has a common entrance with the hospital wards, which means that patients in need of diagnostic facilities are not allowed to enter while doctors are on rounds.
The hospital authorities took a decision to trifurcate the facilities and divide the laboratory into three different sections. “One of the sections is still operated from the room near the theatre. And the problem of patients not being allowed to go in when doctors are on rounds still persists,” the source said.
Now that the laboratory is operating from three different places, the patients and attendants find it extremely hard to maneuver through the crowded hospital and reach the different rooms.
“The lab near the theatre has a steep staircase as its approach. A lady 5 or 6 months pregnant finds it really hard to reach there,” Ghulam Muhammad Khan, a patient’s attendant at the hospital, told Kashmir Reader.
He said that the patients, most of whom are pregnant ladies, find it extremely troublesome to walk from one corner of the hospital to another. “If the doctor prescribes three tests, you have to visit three different facilities inside the crowded hospital,” Khan said.
Kashmir Reader contacted the Principal Government Medical College Anantnag, Dr Showkat Jeelani, but he did not comment on the issue and passed the phone on to Medical Superintendent of the hospital, Dr Mirji Andrabi.
Andrabi said that the hospital has an extreme space crunch. “Until and unless we do not shift to a new spacious building, we will have to bear with this arrangement,” he said.
Asked about the same entrance to the hospital wards and one section of the lab, Andrabi said that the issue has been sorted out and no one is being stopped now from reaching the lab.
Pertinently, it has now been many years since the MCCH — housed in an unsafe, cramped building at Sherbagh in Anantnag — is in need of more spacious premises.
However, work on a new building being constructed in Sarnal area of Anantnag town has been languishing since 2015.
The building at Sherbagh had been declared unsafe by the Fire and Emergency Department long back.