‘They are robbing doctors of their basic dignity. I have never seen doctors being treated this way anywhere’
Anantnag: The overworked doctors performing night duties at Maternity and Childcare Hospital (MCCH) in Anantnag lament the lack of basic facilities, including even a decent room to retire to or a place that can be called a washroom.
The doctors that Kashmir Reader talked to said that it was both unsettling and humiliating to be working in this way, while they are fulfilling the most vital night duty at the hospital.
“You can see how pathetic this room is and how terrible it smells in here,” a doctor told Kashmir Reader. “Is this where doctors on duty should be forced to live?”
The doctor’s room is in a sorry state, with paint peeling off, smelling foul, and no proper arrangement for the doctors to even lie down for a while. “All we do here in this room is keep our belongings. The rest of the time, while we are not attending to patients, we prefer to spend outdoors,” the doctor said.
Doctors rue that they are forced to eat in the same room and it is nauseating. They said they have to carry food from home because there is no proper canteen at the hospital.
“They could have at least painted the room so as to make it look a little cleaner. The paint might have taken the stench out as well. But even that is too much to ask for at this wretched place they call a hospital,” the doctors said.
The condition of the washroom is even worse, and no sane person can stand the stench of the place. “We have trained ourselves to avoid nature’s calls because of the pathetic condition of the washroom. But there are emergencies and we cannot avoid them, and in such cases, we have to run helter-skelter,” the doctors said.
The doctors lament that they have been raising this issue with the administration, time and again, but no one seems to be listening to them. “They are robbing doctors of their basic dignity by treating them like this. I have never seen doctors being treated this way anywhere,” a doctor told this reporter.
The doctors said that they keep working tirelessly amid difficult circumstances, and still face the brunt of the public wrath in case anything at the hospital goes wrong.
“If they treat the doctors like this, imagine the plight of the patients visiting the hospital. The patients are often angry, and rightly so, but it is the doctors who face the wrath of the people,” the doctors said. “We are facing the apathy of the administration and the anger of the general public as well.”
Unfortunately, the doctors said, the Medical Superintendent (MS) of the hospital does not have the requisite powers to mend the situation, given his post is sans drawing and disbursing authority.
“He can only escalate the matter, and nobody listens to him as well,” the doctors said.
Kashmir Reader tried talking to the Principal of the Government Medical College (GMC) Anantnag, Dr Tariq Qureshi, but he did not attend repeated calls made by this reporter. The MCCH is being administered by the GMC authorities.