Proposed speciality hospital in limbo; BBMP loses heart

Citizens left waiting

The hospital in Shivajinagar. Photo by special arrangement

Two years after a cardiac care hospital was proposed in Shivajinagar, the building constructed by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike for the purpose remains locked.

The multi-storeyed building is located slightly ahead of Shivajinagar police station, past the garages and hawkers.

It is the only structure of its kind in the vicinity, standing out as a freshly painted structure with dusty windowsills.

Watching the desolate building only reminds local people of their unrealised dream of having a speciality hospital at a walkable distance. “We were told that there would be a heart hospital here. We’re waiting, but there’s no progress,” said Illiyas, a local vendor.

Constructed at a cost of Rs 40 crore, the building was initially proposed to be a super-speciality hospital. Sources revealed that the plan was to hand over the building to a private player soon with the condition that 10% of the beds should be reserved for the poor.

“The proposal was met with a backlash, with questions as to why the BBMP couldn’t manage its own facility,” a BBMP source said.

BBMP’s Chief Health Officer Dr Niramala Buggi said the issue was discussed at the council,  where it was decided that the building would be handed over to the Bowring and Lady Curzon Medical College.

“The BBMP has primary and secondary care hospitals under its ambit. We have 24 maternity hospitals and six referral hospitals on par with community health centres. We wanted (the building) to be handed over to a medical college since they manage the speciality and superspeciality hospitals,” Dr Niramala
said.

Former Shivajinagar MLA R Roshan Baig said the formality to hand over the building was in progress and there was a proposal in this regard before the Urban Development Department. But the medical college authorities said they did not get any update.

Dr K S Manjunath, director, Bowring and Lady Curzon Medical College Hospital, said: “We have sought the government’s permission to start a superspeciality hospital. We could have between 50 and 70 beds. No decision has been taken yet. There is no response so far on the matter.”

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