Ailing district hospital in Udupi needs treatment

Besides unhygienic conditions, patients have to bear staff apathy too

The hygiene and sanitation is the minimum basic requirement for any hospital that caters to the health care needs of patients who approach with varieties of infections and diseases. However, the scenario is entirely different when it comes to the district hospital in Udupi which itself is the casualty of the administrative lethargy.

The hospital that welcomes with foul smell and unhygienic atmosphere raises qualms over the degree of cleanliness maintained within and outside the hospital.

The dirty floors smeared with blood awaits the attention of cleaners. Patients are reportedly treated as burden and the lack of attention given to the improvement of the hospital has remained as a bane to patients, especially the poor who cannot afford the expenses in private hospitals.

The patients admitted in general wards and special wards with attached toilets should bare the stinking smell as there is no hygiene maintained. Parvathi Kharvi from Malpe who had accompanied her husband in the hospital told Deccan Herald that it is not only the unhygienic conditions that patients have to bear, but also the negligence of the staff including nurses and attenders.

“They treat us as if we have come here for fun. Only after repeated appeals one can be blessed with the attention of the staffs. Or else there is no one to listen to our problems. We cannot complain about the quality of the treatment as we have no other option other than the government hospital. We cannot bare the expenses of the private hospitals,” she said.Though the hospital is allotted with 124 beds, the total physical strength is around 210 beds.

These 210 beds are put up in general wards and also some special rooms. There are no semi special wards in the hospital. There are 22 physicians and surgeons and 26 nurses. The maternity and child care hospital is a separate unit.

District Surgeon Anand Naik said insufficient staff and lack of infrastructure is the main cause behind the unhygienic conditions in the hospital. “The hospital is under renovation. We are asking for the funds and also additional staffs to take care of the health care needs. Although the hospital is upgraded from taluk level hospital to district level hospital, the basic requirements are not fulfilled. The hospital needs extra wards. There are no separate wards to accommodate patients with infectious diseases. Destitutes with ulcers and injuries are brought in large number. The hospital should accommodate 40 to 50 such cases at a time. Patients with all sorts of diseases are put together. These destitute are brought in 108 ambulances and are dumped and there is no one to take care of them. However, there are no sufficient staff to look after the needs of these destitute. Lack of cleaning staffs is another problem,” he explained.

 Further, he added that the medical ward is being renovated and two more wards including surgical ward will also be renovated.

Deputy Commissioner Dr M T Reju told that the hospital is being renovated at a cost of Rs 4 crore and additional Rs 60 lakh has been earmarked from the district administration under the District Innovation Funds. Besides, the hospital is also supported by the District Hospital Committee, an NGO.

He said that all types of medicines are easily available to the patients. There are full fledged medical professionals and also other staff who are required to take care of health care needs and maintain hygiene. He was stern in saying that unhygienic conditions are not tolerated and the people responsible will be punished for their lackadaisical attitude.
The hospital also comprises of full fledged blood bank and the dental section is renovated. Despite the hospital offering many facilities, most of the beds are vacant. Poor can also now avail medical facilities in private hospitals with the various government schemes supporting them, the DC said.

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