The newly-built intensive care unit (ICU) at Paravur Taluk Hospital has turned into a blot on the otherwise well-run institution.

The four-bed ICU stopped functioning soon after it was inaugurated three months ago. The toilet of the orthopaedic ward above the ICU was leaking.

With the leak seeping down the concrete walls, the aseptic condition required for the ICU was affected, and patients had to be shifted out of the unit.

A hospital spokesperson said the leak has been plugged, but the ICU would start functioning only after the municipal engineer conducted inspections. The spokesperson also denied allegation by former municipal chairman N.A. Ali that equipment funded by the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) was being disused at the hospital.

The taluk hospital is one of the oldest in the district and dates back to about a hundred years.

The Health Department built a new three-storey building with funds from the NRHM and the Coastal Area Development Fund sourced by MLA S. Sarma.

The hospital serves a number of nearby areas and boasts of specialist doctors in all sections, a rarity in government hospitals. There are a couple of vacancies in the 20 sanctioned posts.

However, even with all available doctors, it is often difficult to attend to an outpatient (OP) wing that, at peak season, touches 2,000 patients a day.

New OP block

The hospital spokesperson said development work for the hospital is on. A new OP block is under construction. Besides, the hospital is also constructing a sewage treatment plant for which the Directorate of Health Services has sanctioned Rs. 50 lakh. The 155-bed hospital has also utilised the Rs. 84 lakh allotted under various heads by the NRHM for the hospital development during the last financial year.

More In: Kochi