It was a short-lived joy for people residing around Chandrayangutta. The plans of the authorities to start a ‘Neonatal Stabilisation Unit’ (NSU) at the Barkas Community Health Centre (CHC) for treating premature born babies from January this year has not fructified yet.
Though the authorities have set up the NSU with necessary equipment, the project is pending as a few works remain to be completed.
The equipment, including five radiant warmer machines and photo therapy equipment, has been kept in a well furnished ward. Prematurely born babies are kept under radiant warmers or in incubators with climate control conditions designed to keep them warm and limit their exposure to germs.
The CHC has a maternity ward of 10 beds and about 25 cases of deliveries are reported every month. As of now, the authorities shift neonatal cases to other hospitals. The hospital administration hoped to attend the cases at the hospital itself but the delay in making in NSU operational is forcing them to continue with the old practice. Authorities also propose to acquire an anaesthesia machine but there is no word from the government on the matter, hospital sources say. The equipment is much needed as cases of Caesarean deliveries can also be attended too.
As of now, the hospital admits cases of normal deliveries only. Absence of a full-time gynaecologist is turning out to be a major drawback for this 50-bed hospital. There is only one gynaecologist who doubles up as a general physician and attends out patient duties along with four of her colleagues, including a dentist, two paediatricians and ophthalmologist.
Though the sanctioned strength of doctors is eight, only five are posted here. Doctors at the hospital feel at least four paediatricians are needed to man the NSU as it involves maintaining round-the-clock vigil.
About 800-900 out-patients visit the hospital everyday and it has good occupancy in the in-patient ward as well. The CHC attracts patients from villages in adjoining Maheshwaram apart from locals from Shaheen Nagar, Errakunta, Bandlaguda and Chandrayangutta areas.