LAHORE - Lack of facilities at government hospitals is not only causing problems for the poor patients but also for the healthcare providers as they always come on the receiving end in case of any unfortunate incident like the one happened at DHQ Hospital, Vehari.

Law enforcement agencies registered murder case against senior doctors for their alleged negligence that led to death of four newborns at DHQ Hospital Vehari without taking into consideration that whether the required facilities including Oxygen were available or not. The Young Doctors Association Punjab termed it high handedness and sheer violation of the Healthcare Commission Act.  “What to say of a DHQ Hospital in Vehari when proper facilities are not available at Neonate of not only teaching hospitals but also Institute of Child Health and Children’s Hospital in Lahore. Instead of examining the entire situation including available facilities, the government went for stereotype option of taking action against doctors and that too in violation of set procedure”, said YDA Punjab spokesman Dr Amer Bandesha.

When contacted YDA’s Children’s Hospital chapter leader Dr Khuzaima seconded the viewpoint of Dr Amer Bandesha, saying the ICH lacked basic facilities and newborns in critical conditions were at the greater risk of getting complications.  “Three to four Oxygen points are usually functional at Neonate Emergency. As patients are much higher in numbers, they are given Oxygen by making junctions from one source. This not only reduces Oxygen supply but also put the patients at greater risk of getting complications. There are only three warmers, one incubator and five cots at Emergency where over 30 patients are admitted at a time.  As such 3-4 patients are put on one cot that usually result into one getting disease of others”, Dr Khuzaima said, adding that same was the situation with Intensive Care Unit and High Dependency Unit of Neonate.

“There are three ventilators and five beds at ICU of Neonate and one warmer at HDU where patients in critical conditions are admitted. Lesser facilities are causing doctors to treat critical patients in congested environment and even on one bed. The prevailing scenario has put not only the health but also life of newborns at risk”, he said, adding, the government has not increased capacity of the healthcare facility which was creating problems not only for the patients but also for doctors and paramedical staff.

“Load of patients has increased 30 per cent after the construction of Metro Bus. People in Shahdara prefer to come to Children’s Hospital as it is more convenient than going to a government hospital in the near vicinity. Moreover, load of patients is growing 20 per cent annually. The government has neither increased capacity nor provided required equipment with the passage of time”, Dr Khuzaima said, adding, it would be unfortunate if the government blamed doctors without fulfilling the responsibility of improving infrastructure and providing required equipment.