BHOPAL: There was no weekly trial of emergency services at Hamidia Hospital and it led to power disruption and generator failure on Friday evening. There was only one employee to look after all the five generator sets at Hamidia Hospital.
Emergency services, such as power supply, generator operation, oxygen supply, water supply, availability of medicines, sanitation, fire-extinguishers and safety measures, equipment operations and handling, should be properly done at Hamidia Hospital and it should be done on weekly basis. These things are apart from the medical services provided by the doctors. There should be trained hands also to run the management’s affairs.
With three deaths in the corona ward due to a breakdown of power supply and failure of the generator at Hamidia Hospital, the hospital management has been badly exposed in the state-level referral hospital. The hospital management or administration failed to manage the show in time when there was a power breakdown.
According to Hamidia Hospital sources, at a meeting with divisional commissioner Kavindra Kiwayat, many things and lacunae have come to light. PWD executive engineer MS Pawar did not attend any meeting for the past one and a half years. Sub-engineer Rakesh Barbe attends the meeting. There are five digital generator sets at Hamidia Hospital.
And, according to the PWD guidelines, the contractor who installed the generator sets has the responsibility for its maintenance for one year and there must be different employees in three different shifts. But same contractor has maintenance all the five generator sets. There was only one employee to look after all the five generator sets on Friday, while the department is paying at the rate of four employees.
Previously, different contactors had the responsibility for maintenance. But, in case of Hamidia Hospital, the same contractor has been given an extension for the maintenance work. Hamidia Hospital’s generator set, which has a capacity of 250 litres of diesel, had only 20 litres, so it did not support the electricals and power supply in the Covid ward for a longer period of time. This led to three deaths.
Hamidia Hospital has a three-tier electricity system, which means that, if the power comes through the MPV but if it fails, there is a generator for back-up and, if that also fails, then every machine has its own back-up system. The ventilators have the capacity to work without electricity for up to two hours, but all systems seemed to have failed.
Similarly, sanitation is very poor on the Hamidia Hospital premises and people who come here from various districts for medical treatment have to bear the brunt. Dirtiness at washbasins is a common sight at Hamidia and people use the same tap water for their use. Especially children who roam around such water taps and washbasins are at high risk of diseases just because of poor sanitation and dirtiness.
In Ren Basera, there is no facility of beds for the relatives who come with patients. They have no option but to lie on the floor, even in winter. The conditions are such that even attendants may attract diseases from Ren Basera.
‘Twice a week trial’
"I used to do this in Hamidia Hosptial and here, too, I continue the practice. We put the generator on trial twice a week. It’s part of hospital management in addition to our medical profession. Neither a doctor, nor an administrator, can do it as it’s a purely hospital management aspect. From getting the power supply checked, oxygen supply, fire safety measures, availability of medicines, sanitation — all these things are under the purview and jurisdiction of the hospital management. If a doctor has knowledge of it, or experience, then its all right. Otherwise, it’s an additional burden on any doctor to run the affairs. I even ensure proper water supply at TB Hospital as I used to do at Hamidia. I can’t take for granted that there must be a regular supply from BMC. In case there’s a disruption in water supply, we have to keep regular vigil and call BMC for tanker supply at the hospital in time. Similarly, we call the MPEB and other agencies regularly to keep the system operative at the hospital," says TB Hospital Medical Superintendent Dr AK Shrivastava, who was also MS, Hamidia Hospital.