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GMCH to get burn care unit

July 18: The Gauhati Medical College and Hospital will soon get a new 12-bed burn care unit under a pilot project of the Centre. Meant to be equipped with facilities for intensive care, it will address the specific treatment needs of patients suffering from varied degrees of burns.

Following the serial blasts that had rocked the city in 2008, Dispur had announced that a state-of-the-art burn care unit would be set up at the GMCH but it did not materialise even after two years.

“The burn care unit will definitely help in the better management of burn cases. The process for the construction of this unit is on,” said GMCH superintendent R. Talukdar.

While the hospital has a seven-bed burn care ward, it is not adequately equipped in terms of medical infrastructure, which proves to be a hindrance in proper treatment of patients.

Besides, with the hospital receiving a considerable number of burn cases, all cannot be accommodated in the present ward and have to be admitted in other wards, which greatly increases the chance of infection for a patient suffering from burns.

The hospital receives 790-900 burn cases every year.

The burn care unit would be funded by the Union government and would act as a well-equipped tertiary centre for patients suffering from burns. The hospital authorities are also taking measures to institute a team of paramedics and nurses specially trained to attend patients in the burn unit.

“A 12-bed burn care unit will soon be opened in our hospital under a pilot project of the Union government to start state-of-the-art burn units in different states of the country. Our hospital has been designated as a tertiary centre. While the new unit will have eight general beds, the remaining four beds will be for patients requiring intensive care facilities. There will also be a separate operation theatre where dressing of burn wounds will be carried out, as a very sterile environment is required for it,” Seemarekha Devi, associate professor of the department of plastic surgery of the GMCH, said.

“Burn care management comprises treatment for a long period. Since the skin that acts as the protective layer of the body is damaged during burns, the internal organs of a patient become susceptible to infections that can lead to multiple complications. Hence, a combined approach of treatment is required and the patient has to be constantly monitored. We have been training our nurses and paramedics on ways to handle a burn patient,” she said.

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