Bhubaneswar, July 16: Sanitation and maintenance of peripheral hospitals in the capital are in a mess because of shortage of class IV staff.
Be it Baramunda zonal dispensary near Rental Colony, Unit IV or Unit VI, class IV employees meant for the upkeep of the campuses and surroundings are nowhere to be seen. While in Baramunda and Unit IV, there are vacancies against sanctioned posts, at Unit VIII dispensary, the sweeper has not been turning up for last four months.
At zonal dispensary Nayapalli in IRC village, at least two sweepers are required to maintain the huge hospital area. However, at present only one is doing the job.
Even the big premises are now filled with bushes and weeds, giving an impression of a social forestry project and no one knows when they would be cleaned. On the second consecutive day today, The Telegraph scanned four peripheral hospitals to gauge the state of affairs.
“The zonal dispensary at IRC village, meant to become a 24-bed hospital in future, and the second largest healthcare delivery centre after Capital Hospital with a patient inflow over 150 per day, is now functioning as an outdoor facility primary health centre comprising just two beds.
The patients can stay here for a few hours if any observation is needed, otherwise they might have to go for first-aid or have to visit the Capital Hospital for further check-up,’’ said pharmacist R.C. Praharaj.
“The land for the hospital was quite big as it was meant to house a campus with various investigation facilities, but it could not materialise. However, there were several issues regarding the boundary wall as the nearby market complex has included some portion of our land into their project,’’ said an employee of the hospital on condition of anonymity.
“Even though the boundary wall has been constructed, the trading community continues to dump garbage into our territory,’’ he added.
Medical officer S. Mishra admitted that sanitation has become a problem here in the dispensary hospital since it is not possible for a single person to maintain cleanliness. Also the premises outside the building are full of weeds and no step has been taken by the civic authorities to remove them.
“The biomedical-waste disposal is another problem. All these are compounded by the dumping of garbage by the business community, who think the hospital compound as their disposal ground,’’ said Mishra.
“We also need a female health worker for our hospital,’’ she said.
The pharmacist said though nursing staff manages the immunisation programme every Wednesday, there should be a nurse on a regular basis since the patient inflow is much more.
Duryodhan Das (64), a retired subedar with the Army said, “I go to the nearest dispensary because it is cheap and less time consuming. They need more people to manage the show,” he said.
“People working in a private clinic or dispensary have to either perform or perish. But when it comes to government officials, everything is not related to performance. This should be codified. I think even at this dispensary the pharmacist writes half of the prescriptions,” he added.
The Baramunda zonal dispensary near Rental Colony handles more than 60 patients everyday, but there is no staff to do the cleaning job.
“After the death of an employee no posting has been made so far,’’ was the observation of a medical officer and pharmacist.
At Unit VIII zonal dispensary the sweeper has not turned up for the last four months. “We tried to contact him but there was no response. Even after taking disciplinary action against them these people show no respect towards the administration,’’ said a pharmacist.
Rakesh Ranjan Behera, a class XII student of Rajdhani College and resident of Unit VIII Gopabandhu Nagar, said, “The hospital premises should remain clean to boost the mood of patients. While sitting at the premises or waiting for the doctor one should feel good.’’ Unit IV zonal dispensary, the only unit hospital to have an operation theatre, surprisingly has no anaesthetist.
“Without an anaesthetist we are only going for minor surgeries,’’ said medical officer R.C. Rout adding that another medicine specialist is needed for the hospital.
“Though there is a need for a medicine specialist, a gynaecologist is posted here and the doctor is attached to Capital Hospital since the pressure is a lot more there,’’ said Rout. When asked regarding cleanliness of the hospital premises, Rout said, “We are still running short of one sweeper and another attendant. We have already informed the higher authorities about the same.”
Gangadhar Rath, the chief medical officer of the Capital Hospital, admitted to the shortage of sweepers, but he observed that discussion regarding the policy decisions will be shared later with the media.