K.S. Sudhi

Most hospitals do not have power generators

Gynaecology cases in Fort Kochi hospital attended to with battery-torch light

Palluruthy hospital has generator but no kerosone permit

KOCHI: A phone call to the local Electricity Board office…It is the only power backup system for the Government hospital, Fort Kochi, in case of power disruption.

While attending to emergency cases, the staff of the hospital will make a call to the local office of the Kerala State Electricity Board with a plea not to cut the power supply until the case is attended. Most of the time the Board officials oblige, much to the relief of the hospital staff and the patients.

During the regular power cuts, they cannot expect such a gesture from the Board officials. Then, they will have to rely on candles till the power supply is resumed despite owning a generator set.

Like the Government hospital, Fort Kochi, most of the Government hospitals in and around the city do not have power backup system and have to depend on alternative sources like candles and emergency lamps.

“The Fort Kochi hospital owns a mini-generator set which is used to light the bulbs in the causality wing. There is no backup system for other wings of the hospital. Earlier, we had to attend to the gynaecology cases in the dim light of battery-powered torches,” said a staff of the hospital. The general hospital, Thripunithura, has just one generator which is used to light the causality wing, operation theatre and female ward of the hospital. However, there is no alternative system for lighting the labour room in case of disruption of power, hospital authorities said. On an average, there will be around 90 inpatients in the hospital. The new block of the hospital is yet to get a power backup system.

The electric bulbs of the general ward of the Women and Children Hospital, Mattancherry, is lighted using the inverter installed in the hospital. While a generator is used as standby for the operation theatre, there is no provision for alternative supply of power to the labour room of the hospital which is dedicated for women and children. The Government hospital, Palluruthy, has been owning a generator set for the last eight years. Yet, it has not been put to use for want of a permit for procuring kerosene. “We need kerosene and petrol for operating the generator. No arrangements have been made so far for obtaining the permit,” said a hospital staffer. The Palluruthy hospital had recently hit the headlines after the Kerala State Electricity Board authorities terminated the power supply for non-payment of power bills. The hospital had Rs. 87,000 as arrears when the power supply was cut. Of all the Government hospitals in the city, only the General Hospital has a near-perfect power backup system. The lamps of the causality wing of the hospital use the power generated by the biogas plant set up in the hospital premises in case of power disruption. Generators provide power backup for the operation theatre, blood bank and pharmacy of the hospital.

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