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Health hub fights power crisis

AIIMS-Patna has decided to put in place a power back- up, considering the erratic energy supply at the health hub.

Over the past few days, frequent power cuts have been common at the hospital. The Telegraph had reported on the power problems plaguing the premier health hub on February 11. Now, the administration has decided not to rely on the services of Patna Electric Supply Undertaking (Pesu) and have their own back-up.

“Three generators with a combined capacity of 160KVA would be installed at the medical college building, hostel building and Ayush and pulmonary medicine rehabilitation building. The hospital’s requires power supply between 127KVA and 137KVA. So, we would be able to fulfil our requirements by installing three generators. We already have a big generator with a capacity of 20KVA but we cannot use it now because it won’t be able to take the load,” said G.K. Singh, the director of AIIMS-Patna.

Sources said power outage at the state-of-the-art health cradle on four days in January, coupled with frequent power cuts, made life difficult for patients, students and doctors, drilling holes in the state government’s claims of ensuring uninterrupted power supply.

A doctor at the hospital said there was no power at AIIMS-Patna on January 27, 28 and 30, while supply was erratic throughout January 29. Diagnostic work and classes were both affected.

On Wednesday, too, power was off for at least two hours during a seminar. Around 50 doctors had come from across the state for the event, said Dr Singh.

“The hospital had organised a seminar on allergic rhinitis. Around 50 doctors had come, but the seminar had to be stopped mid-way for a power of two hours. The doctors were very disappointed because they had to give PowerPoint presentations,” he said.

An AIIMS-Patna doctor said: “Work in the operating theatres was also affected because of the power cut on Wednesday. Equipment being installed at the new operating theatre had to be stopped. The hospital administration has taken the right decision by making alternative arrangements. The government should ensure round-the-clock electricity to AIIMS-Patna but it doesn’t seem serious about it.”

The director added that Pesu has been unable to ensure continuous supply in spite of the health hub paying Rs 25-Rs 30 lakh a month in power bills.

Sources said the hospital had arranged for a few generators on rent last month to fight the frequent power cuts, but proved to be a costly affair. “The hospital was shelling out Rs 4,000 a hour for the generators. Not only was the service costly, but it was not very good too,” said a source.