LARKANA: As many as 4,145 patients expired in Chandka Medical College Hospital during 2017, PPI learnt here on Sunday.

The statistics show that averagely over 11 patients lost their lives in the hospital every day. A total of 61,787 patients were discharged after treatment and 5,803 were LAMA (Left Against Medical Advice), while 28,998 major and minor operations were carried out and 10,65,005 patients came to Out Patients Department (OPD) to get medical treatment.

As many as 118,985 X-Rays and 101,000 Ultrasounds were carried out during the same year. 658,895 laboratory examinations and 14,533 kidney-failure patients got dialysis during last year. Likewise, 1790 patients’ kidney stones were removed through Lithotripsy procedure, 66,453 ECGs and 3,976 NVDs were done.

In January 2017, 392 patients expired. In February 307, in March 306, April 328, May 376, June 407, July 390, August 364, September 345, October 298, November 276 and in December 356 indoor patients died in the largest Teaching Hospital of upper Sindh having 1500 bed capacity. This major hospital is claimed to be catering to the needs of over 12 districts of lower Sindh, parts of Balochistan and lower part of Punjab. Worst affected is the emergency department (Accident and Emergency Center) where no Chief Casualty Medical Officer (a post of BPS-20) has been posted since very long to properly manage the affairs of the emergency patients that arrive here in critical condition from far flung areas. No proper Casualty Medical Officer (CMO) is posted and all doctors have to perform 15-days rotation duty as CMO in all three shifts which show how health department is giving priority to the healthcare system in the province. Likewise no Woman Medico-Legal Officer (WMLO) is posted, despite two sanctioned posts of WMLO of BPS-17, to carry out medico-legal work of female patients and all lady doctors have to perform 15-days rotation duty which too amounts to maltreatment. Three male doctors have been directed to perform MLO duty, despite 17 sanctioned posts of MLOs and all are vacant. None of these MLOs have been trained in jurisprudence and other related laws. It is also a fact that those doctors are posted as MLOs or CMOs who fail to perform their duties perfectly as punishment. Police Surgeon (a post of BPS-20) has recently been posted after a long time who will retire next month.

A retired Senior Medical Officer Dr. Rahim Bux Baloch said that after transfer of Dr. Hussain Bux Memon in 2001 performance of this hospital continue to decline from top to bottom as all Medical Superintendents posted here after him were on political influence.

Dr. Ikram Tunio, President-elect of Pakistan Medical Association (PMA), Pakistan, said that shortage of nursing-care, paramedical staff and doctors has badly affected this major hospital. He said a shortage of latest equipment, instruments, and machinery is another factor which is supplied to the Karachi Hospitals but this hospital has always been neglected.

He said the government had tried its best to improve the system through PPHI, IHS. It has increased their annual budget as well through public-private partnership system but it has further aggravated the situation and has thus failed. He said that rulers now want to handover teaching hospitals under a public-private partnership to the private sector which will be resisted as the working of these hospitals will also be ruined. He said that if the government wants improvement in the healthcare system then it shall have to stop political interference in the affairs of the hospitals, fill all vacant posts from BPS-2 to 20 and most highly qualified, trained and experienced doctors as MS on merit which will bring good governance and situation will gradually change.

He said the ratio of patients’ mortality could be higher in Karachi hospitals. He said nursing care should be increased along with required facilities. He said in the world over female nurses are posted but here the male nursing staff is being appointed as there is a difference of working between male & female nurses. Dr. Tunio said some influential people beg from outside in the name of people and patients of Pakistan and then have partnerships with the government here and it is handing over health institutions without consideration.