GUNTUR: Rats killing a 10-day-old infant on Aug. 26, 2015, at the Government General Hospital, Guntur, indicated the negligence of the staff at the state facility. Deccan Chronicle published a report on the negligence of the staff at the state facility, exactly a month after the incident occurred at the hospital. Since then, the hospital authorities have brought about many changes in the facility as Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu showed special interest in the issue.
A mission, Operation 72 hours, was launched in which heads of all the departments of the district-level participated. Around 500 sanitary workers from Guntur Municipal Corporation and district fire fighters were deployed on cleaning the drainage system. More than 5,000 rats were kiled in and around the premises of the hospital. Within three days, the government set up a park in front of the Podili Prasadu New block and removed many old and dilapidated buildings and even began repairs to the existing buildings.The CM himself visited the hospital to inspect the progress of works.
The government appointed special deputy collector S. Raghunath as special administrative officer for the hospital to look after the things other than the medical administration. Four officials including sanitation officer, resident medical officer, head nurse and staff nurse were suspended and two officials including the superintendent and the paediatric surgeon were transferred from the hospital. The state government also cancelled the then sanitation contract and awarded it to a new party.
The government proposed new buildings and also sanctioned money to some of them immediately like the MCH Block, Service Block, Nursing College and Hostel and senior residents hostel for women. Old buildings were renovated on the premises. Three waiting halls for attendants will begin functioning from the end of this month. The state sanctioned Rs 4 crore for various requirements, said superintendent Raju Naidu. Installing of more than 60 CCTV camera surveillance provision is under progress said Mr. Raghunath.
Security at hospital still to be addressed:
Despite taking many initiatives, there are plenty of problems that need to be addressed at the GGH, Guntur. Though the sanitation at the hospital has improved than before the rat bite incident, the security aspect is still weak. Shortage of staff including nurses, administrative and others, has been reported but no new recruitments were taken up. Both the management and the state government could not stop the doctors of GGH from doing private practice.
The government has failed in providing sufficient parking place for the patients, their attendants on the premises.There is no proper announcement system at the hospital which can guide both patients and attendants in taking the right directions. Special officer S. Raghunath said they will take the assistance of I & PR department in installing the public addressing system at the hospital.
He added that strengthening of security system, providing parking facility, regulating entry and exit of visitors and installing the digital signature at the hospital for employees and many others need to be addressed. Mr. Raghunath said the firefighting system would be fortified at some vulnerable places like wards, pharmacy and others. The security of the hospital would be addressed only after resolving all the above issues, he said.
Superintendent Raju Naidu said that the hospital needs a transformer to meet the electricity needs at the time of emergency situations. All of the above, accountability on the part of GGH staff, including doctors and nurses is a must, observed K. Venkatanarayana, a visitor at the hospital.
Wheelchairs misused as waste trolleys:
Special officer for administration at GGH, Guntur, S. Raghunath accepted that the workers had been misusing the wheelchairs and stretchers, meant exclusively for the service of patients. The officer issued a circular after Deccan Chronicle brought the issue into light by publishing a report in these columns. He said from now onwards, he would ensure that equipment meant for patients would be used for them only.
He said that separate pushcarts would be provided to shift medical waste and other things, including medicine, saline bottles. He said there was a lot of old wood that had come from various demolished buildings on the premises and removal of trees at the hospital. “All this would be used for other purposes and also to make pushcarts for shifting medical waste.”
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