KURNOOL: Power outage at the Kurnool government general hospital has allegedly caused the death of 20 critically- ill patients and hundreds of patients underwent a harrowing experience for more than 12 hours as the wards were plunged in darkness. On an average, the hospital records 10 to 15 deaths every day. Hospital superintendent Dr J. Veeraswami, however, said that these deaths were not due to power outage. State health minister Kamineni Srinivas has sought a detailed report on the tragedy. He was dismayed to find that none of the duty doctors, including the resident medical officer, was present in the hospital when patients were dying.
The hospital superintendent said that it is the duty of the RMO to be present in the hospital. It was gross negligence on the part of the hospital staff, he added. Explaining the reason for the power blackout, he said that a police outpost set up in the hospital premises was drawing power directly from a high tension line. A preliminary study reveals that the power snapped because of the crossing of electrical wires with the HT line. The outpost was the main culprit for darkness in the hospital since 8 pm on Wednesday, he said.
“We made frantic efforts to get the issue fixed with the electricity department, but no lineman was available till the next morning,” he said. He alleged that the linemen refused to climb the electric poles at night. Transco officials, however, say that it is not their duty to fix problems in the premises of the hospital. Transco superintendent of engineer G. Bhargava Ramudu said a High Tension (HT) connection was given to the hospital and the substation within the hospital took care of internal connections. Chief Inspector of the Three Town police station, Srinivasa Rao, who runs the police outpost, said they do not draw power separately for the outpost.