BY MOHD MAJID MALIK,BHADERWAH , NOV 02—- The single public Sub District Hospital Bhaderwah in Doda district fails to deliver due to paucity of doctors, paramedical staff, and lack of medicines. It has even no budget to run the operation theatre and ambulance of the hospital.The hospital was established in 1955 but the hospital is in a shambles, and even the much-publicized Health Ministers health sector reforms programme has failed to improve matters.
Today 38 out of 67 sanctioned posts, including doctors and paramedical staff and even three posts of operation theatre assistants are lying vacant. There is paucity of lifesaving drugs in the hospital, leaving no option for the people but to rely on private clinics, paying high fees.The posts of one female medical officer, and one each post of senior medical officer, orthopedic surgeon, medical specialist, eye specialist, ENT specialist, pathologist, and radiologist are vacant.Similarly other posts including that of hakeem, senior nurse, orthopedic assistant, orthopedic technician, radiographer, statistical accountant, midwife, laboratory assistant, homeopathic dispenser, hakeem assistant, tube well operator, washman, driver and naib qasid are also vacant for long.Nine out of 12 posts of sanitary workers, four posts of dispensers, all three posts of operation theater assistants, two posts of midwives and two posts of storekeepers are vacant, making it impossible to provide `better health care` to masses which the provincial government often claims.
The hospital badly needs full fledged eye, pathology and radiology departments to provide people of Bhaderwah and adjoining villages better health care.Women patients, especially the pregnant, suffer because of lack of female medical officer and midwives in the hospital. In case of complex delivery cases, the patients are rushed to Doda district headquarters hospitals, risking the lives of mother and infant which is about 35 km away from here . It is also notable here that SDH Bhaderwah has also become the hub of attachments as maximum staff are attached here from rural areas due to which rural people are also suffering a lot and even BMO Bhaderwah is on leave from two months intead of shortage of doctors .
There are no sitting places for the patients as they wait for doctors in verandhas. Even for the hospital staff there is no furniture as they perform duties without chairs and tables.When contacted, senior officer of deprtment at Doda he said in the condition of anonymity that the hospital was facing acute shortage of doctors and paramedics, adding that he has informed the higher health authorities about this sorry state in July. However, he regretted that three months have passed but the district and provincial governments have not provided single penny to the hospital for purchasing medicines, necessary equipment for operation theatre and diesel for ambulance and generator. It is pertinent to mention here that Bhaderwah is the home town of Union Health Minister G N Azad .