ANANTNAG — Believe it or not but it is true. A doctor seeks permission from an ambulance driver first and only then refers any serious patient to any hospital in Srinagar. This happens only at Maternity and Child Care Hospital (MCCH) Anantnag.
The biggest hospital in the southern part of Kashmir valley has only one functional ambulance while no seriousness is being shown to repair two other faulty ambulances.
The hospital, apart from catering for patients from four Southern districts including Anantnag, Kulgam, Pulwama and Shopian, receives patients from Ramban district and Chenab valley as well.
“It’s an irony that a hospital, where over 100 patients remain admitted in labour and surgical wards every night, has only one ambulance for patients. Over 500 to 800 patients visit the hospital OPD every day for examination,” a medico at the hospital told KNT on the condition of anonymity.
He said doctors at the hospital cannot refer two serious patients at a time to any Srinagar hospital. “A doctor has to call the ambulance driver first to ask him whether he is free or not. It’s not a good thing for patients,” he said.
Insiders said that two hospital ambulances developed some faults — one in September last year and another this year in January — but they were never repaired.
“Only one ambulance remains available in the hospital. The hospital can’t refer a pregnant woman to any Srinagar hospital at will but the doctors need to call the ambulance driver first to ask him when he will be available for the referral.”
They said even a 108 free ambulance service is not available at MCCH while one such ambulance has been stationed even at Achabal Primary Health Centre.
Pertinently, MCCH is affiliated with Government Medical College Anantnag.
One of the doctors said that Medical Superintendent MCCH tried his best to get the faulty ambulances repaired but GMC Anantnag is not serious about the issue. The ambulances are lying dysfunctional much to the sufferings of the serious patients.
“I would like to intimate your good-self that there are only three ambulances at M&CCH Anantnag. Out of three ambulances, only one is on the road and the other two ambulances are off the road,” reads an official communiqué dispatched to Principal GMC from Medical Superintendent MCCH.
Medical Superintendent MCCH, Dr MS Andrabi, said that they had sent a requisition letter to the Principal GMC informing him about the matter. “I don’t know what GMC did or are doing at the moment,” he said.
Despite repeated attempts, Principal Government Medical College Anantnag, Dr Showkat Jeelani, did not pick up the phone. (KNT)