Indore, July 17: After the shocking incident of a dog dragged the body of a newborn and mauling in the open in Maharaja Yashwantrao hospital, an insight into the state of affairs reveals gory facts about the administration of the hospital. A similar incident in January revealed criminal negligence by the hospital and showed how much it cared for dignity to the dead when the body of a man was swarmed by ants in May.
The hospital gained notoriety when 11 persons including two children died due to alleged negligence in the supply of oxygen to the patients. Various media reports suggest the patients were inhaling the Nitrogen instead of Oxygen in the last month. The incident compelled the National Human Rights Commission to take suo motu cognisance and issue notice to the Chief Secretary, Government of Madhya Pradesh. Even after the incident of Sunday was registered by the police, the medical superintendent of the hospital neither issued any clarification or answered the questions.
Various reports in media suggest the hospitals in the state failed on various parameters like lack of doctors, surgeons and medical instruments are not only missing but the situation remains stark in Rural Madhya Pradesh. The infrastructure of 51 districts hospitals, 66 civil hospitals, 335 community health centres, 1170 primary health centres, 9192 health sub-centres and 49864 gram aarogya kendras in Madhya Pradesh may sound well but all remains lifeless without Doctors.
Among the sanctioned strength of 7000 doctors, 4000 posts remain vacant. Similarly, an abysmal retention rate of 30 to 40 percent of doctors in government services makes the situation impossible for patients to access quality health services. Another report by a leading daily last year stated the district hospital in Sehore, the constituency of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan did not had basic facilities like ventilators and an incubator. National Rural Health Mission (2005-2012)’ ‘Mission document’ includes Madhya Pradesh as one of the 18 high focus states including BIMARU states ‘to address the inter-state and inter-district disparities, including unmet needs for public health infrastructure’.
Corruption: A major impediment
A report by The Hindu stated Corruption in purchase and distribution of medicines remains another factor which affects the patients badly. The report stated government hospitals paid Rs 1.15 crore more than the tender price in the purchase of medicines and orthopaedic implants in Jayarogya group of hospitals, affiliated to the government-owned G.R. Medical College in Gwalior. The revelation was made in an audit by the Office of the Accountant General. The report further states, “medicines procured by doctors in government hospitals were not tested for their quality before distribution. Medicines worth Rs. 65 lakh purchased by the Chief Medical and Health Officers (CMHOs) and Civil Surgeons (CSs) were found to be “not of standard quality” in tests conducted by the Food and Drug Administration. “