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Hazaribagh’s Covid hospital has 24 ventilators, but none to operate them

Superintendent says he has written to officials, seeking skilled manpower
Ventilators at the ICU of Hazaribagh Medical College and Hospital.

Vishvendu Jaipuriar   |   Hazaribagh   |   Published 07.09.20, 05:56 PM

Hazaribagh Medical College and Hospital (HMCH) now has 24 ventilators in its ICU, a key element in treating serious Covid patients, but lacks the manpower to operate them.

HMCH superintendent Sanjay Sinha said he had written to senior officials of the district administration and the health department a number of times to draw their attention to the peculiar problem.


“There is a lack of skilled manpower to operate ventilators. There are four more ventilators and when these are installed, the total number of ventilators will be 28,” he told The Telegraph Online on Monday.

Of the 24 that are installed, eight were given by NTPC, four were procured with funds from the district mineral foundation trust and the rest were given by the health directorate in  Ranchi.

NTPC is understood to have spent Rs 58.8 lakh from its CSR funds to donate eight ventilators to HMCH.

HMCH is the biggest Covid hospital of the area that, like elsewhere, has seen a rise in the number of Covid cases. Hazaribagh district has recorded more than 2,000 Covid cases. Of these, 1,346 have recovered. In all, 19 Covid patients have died.

Sinha said they had three assistant doctors looking after Covid patients. But they needed more skilled hands to operate the ventilators. “So far, we have not had to treat a Covid patient who needed to be put on the ventilator,” he added.

The ICU of HMCH where the ventilators have been set up is a 12-bed facility. “We have four more ventilators and soon engineers will come to install them. Ventilators need to be operated by skilled personnel. And that is why I have written to officials a number of times,” Sinha said.

Doctors here admit that to have so many ventilators in the hospital was a big achievement for the district which till recently, lacked proper facilities in its ICU. Several critical patients have had to be referred to Ranchi because of this.

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