Doctors struggle to keep pace with the heavy patient inflow
Patients at the government hospitals in the capital paid the price for the ongoing tussle between junior doctors and health authorities over ‘guidelines’ concerning the implementation of the mandatory rural service.
All emergency services at teaching hospitals including Gandhi, Osmania and Niloufer hospitals were hit by the boycott.
The essential role of the medicos is to act as a ‘link’ between patients and senior doctors.
The PG students at the casualty receive patients, conduct preliminary tests and alert the concerned senior doctors about the patient’s condition.
With the absence of junior doctors, chaos reigned supreme. Medical services were hit by delays, as senior doctors struggled to keep up with the heavy patient inflow.
The relatives of the critically ill were angry because they had to bring patients on their own in a stretcher and search for help in the emergency.
“There are no ward boys here and I had to bring my son on a stretcher on my own to the casualty. It took 25 minutes for us to draw the attention of senior doctors,” bemoaned Ashok Raj, whose son had a head injury at the casualty ward of Gandhi Hospital.
Outpatient services, however, were conducted without any major hiccups at these three hospitals and over 1,000 patients turned up.
Niloufer Hospital Superintendent Dr. D. Ranganath pointed towards the huge number of ‘critical’ cases that are admitted to the hospital. “60 per cent of the babies admitted here are below 1.5 kilograms of weight. All of them come to us from corporate hospitals with low birth weight, infection and asphyxia, a condition in which babies can’t breathe and don’t cry immediately after birth,” he said.
Dr. Ranganath noted that on an average, 10 to 16 babies, who are admitted in critical condition, die everyday at the hospital .
“Despite being overburdened, we have received over 1,000 outpatients and admitted close to 1,400 patients,” he added.
Meanwhile, medicos claimed that the boycott of emergency duties was total in all teaching hospitals.
“We will continue our stir till guidelines on the rural service are framed. We don’t even know what our job description is, whom to report to and accommodation details. We have still not received information on security, working hours, duties, under whom we have to work, eligibility for leave and many such issues,” they said.