Deadline over, Anantnag nursing homes continue to endanger patients' lives

KT NEWS SERVICE. Dated: 2/17/2020 11:15:16 AM

ANANTNAG, Feb 16: Following an expose by The Kashmir Times about private nursing homes in Anantnag town putting the lives of patients at risk due to gas bukharis, district health authorities woke up from slumber and had issued notices to their owners asking them to ensure the availability of all the facilities to the patients.
The chief medical officer (CMO) had given fifteen days deadline to the owners of these private hospitals for installing central heating system or ACs strictly ordering them not to use gas bukharis in post-operative wards. The officer had threatened the nursing home management with strict action if they don't stop playing with the lives of patients and provide all other facilities to them.
However, more than a week after the deadline was over, these nursing homes in nexus with the health authorities continue to risk the lives of patients including mothers and newborns by using gas heaters in post-operative wards. This reporter visited at least four nursing homes of the town and found the gas heaters being used in post-operative wards. In some of the nursing homes like South City, SKJ and Al-Noor, all located along busy KP road area, more than two gas heaters were found in use in some post operative wards. Kashmir Times is in possession of photos and videos of the gas bukharies switched on close to the beds, mothers and newborns are lying on.
At one of these nursing homes an attendant whose wife had undergone Cesarean said that he had sought separate room in the hospital for his convenience but the hospital officials told him that all such rooms are occupied. They, he said, later kept his wife for post-operative observation in a general ward with other patients.
"People pay huge sums in these nursing homes for better facilities and convenience. But what I found here is that they are more inconvenient than government hospitals and only fleece the gullible patients. Now I regret my decision of not taking my wife to government maternity hospital," the attendant said requesting not to be named as his wife was still admitted in the hospital.
Other nursing homes making mothers and newborns inhale carbon monoxide by burning LPG heaters close to their beds include Wani hospital Moominabad, John Bishop hospital, JASCO and south city.
Though the chief medical officer (CMO), Anantnag, Dr Mukhtar said that a team of health department constituted by him is carrying out inspection of these nursing homes, sources, however said that the inspection is just an eyewash.
"Our team has already inspected some nursing homes but have not submitted the report yet" CMO told Kashmir Times.
Asked why the inspection to these nursing homes and action against them was delayed, CMO had no satisfactory answer.
An official of the health department, however, described the inspection of these nursing homes as a mere eyewash by the district health authorities.
"Had CMO been serious about the violation of norms by these nursing homes he would have himself inspected them along with some other top officials and expert doctors. The CMO instead included a pharmacist and a dentist in the inspection team clearly indicating that this inspection is nothing more an eyewash aimed at deceiving the top authorities," a health official said.
Pertinently, Director Health Services Kashmir, Dr Sameer Matoo too had blamed the CMO concerned for failing to keep check on these nursing homes.
Deputy Commissioner, Anantnag, Bashir Ahmad Dar told Kashmir Times that he will constitute a new team for monitoring of these nursing homes.
"There will be no member from health department in the inspection team. The team will be only from district administration," DC said.



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