Move to convert it into specialised centre for orthopaedics

The Government Peripheral Hospital in K.K.Nagar, which is centrally located and has 100 beds, languishes for want of attention. The proposal to convert it into a specialised centre for orthopaedics with specific attention to trauma care is awaiting clearance from the Health Department.

The hospital, built in 1978 for the benefit of residents of south and central Chennai, including areas such as K.K.Nagar, Ashok Nagar, Saidapet, Guindy, Choolaimedu, Chinmaya Nagar, Porur, and Ramapuram, offers medical and general surgical facilities.

It currently receives around 1,000 patients every day, including 60 in-patients.

Apart from childbirths and some general surgeries, outpatient services for tuberculosis, diabetes and leprosy are offered on certain days of the week. The hospital is regularly sought for anti-rabies vaccine. A hospital source at least 10 new patients are treated for dog-bites every day.

According to V. Ravichandran, founder-chairman of Citizens Guardian, a non-governmental organisation, when the Tamil Nadu Housing Board (TNHB) developed Ashok Nagar, it had allotted 120 grounds with a plan to set up a multi-specialty hospital.

A portion of the land was given to the Regional Transport Office (RTO) and to the Taluk Office. What now remain are 88 grounds, much of which was encroached upon by slum dwellers.

With the hospital located only on around 18 grounds, there is considerable scope for expanding the facility, he says.

Since 2004, the K.K. Nagar Residents Welfare Association has been demanding a full-fledged hospital to provide trauma care with a dedicated operation theatre and 24-hour blood bank. According to a senior hospital authority, the hospital is qualified to handle medico-legal cases.

K. Prakasam, president of Tamil Nadu Medical Council, said six out of every 10 patients, who come to a hospital, require trauma care. “With increasing number of vehicles the number of accidents has also increased. Most of the patients of trauma care are road accident victims and invariably they must be treated by an orthopaedist.” It was for this reason that the Institute of Orthopaedics, Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital, was given permission to develop and upgrade the K.K. Nagar peripheral hospital as a centre for trauma care, he added.

Head of the Institute R.H. Govardhan said that the proposal was returned by the government seeking details about percentage of staff pattern, expenditure that would be incurred and the cost analysis. “The proposal is very much in place. We have given the details that the government had sought from us. It is for the Director of Medical Education to take up the issue with the government,” Dr. Govardhan said.

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