5 months on, NICU set up at GMC Anantnag fails to serve cause

Hospital lacks staff to operate facility

By: Ahmad Shabir

Anantnag: The establishment of Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at the main campus of Government Medical College (GMC) Anantnag in Janglat Mandi area, five months ago, has failed to serve any purpose as it continues to remain non-functional.

The purpose behind the setting up of NICU at the main hospital campus was to prevent the referrals of children from GMC associated, but the space starved Maternity and Child Hospital (MCH) continues to shift patients to Srinagar for ventilator support.

However, sources said that the setting up of facility has served no purpose as the children brought to MCH and needing ventilator support are directly referred to Srinagar instead to the facility.

Sources said that none of the five ventilators installed in pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) at the hospital campus is in use.

Though the principal of the GMC had put up all his efforts to make the NICU functional at the hospital to avoid referrals but due to the dearth of staff, sources said, the facility continues to remain non-functional.

“Since the setting up of facility not a single child has been put on ventilator support there,” a doctor posted at GMC Anantnag said.

Once, the doctor said, all the leads of a ventilator burnt after it was plugged in on trial basis.

“It is only the sign board reading ‘NICU’ that is visible at the entrance of the room and inside ventilators are gathering dust for want of use,” said another doctor.

He, however, said that the principal is making all his efforts to shift the space starved MCH to main GMC hospital campus.

“Once the pediatric wing of the MCH is shifted to the main campus, the department will only then see its ICU functional. But, I can tell you that principal is very much serious in getting the MCH shifted from congested Sherbagh to main GMC hospital campus,” the doctor said.

Principal GMC, Anantnag, Dr Tariq Qureshi, however, said that the facility is functional very much with five ventilators.

Asked why children are referred to Srinagar then, Principal said that only neonates are referred. “Doctors cannot put the normal children on ventilator at the facility,” Principal said.

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