Srinagar, Dec 05: The primary tertiary care SKIMS (JVC) Hospital here in Srinagar is allegedly lacking pure drinking water facilities.
Visitors said that one who drinks available lot from the taps is feared to catch any water-borne ailment, including deadly hepatitis or gastrointestinal infections.
(KNS) correspondent Waseem Ramzan when visited the JVC hospital on Wednesday, the patients and their attendants said one thing in common, Absence of pure drinking water.
“While over the years, in the wake of rise in water-borne diseases, people avoid consuming water directly from the government supplies meeting the consumer needs through taps, the authorities here seemingly slept over the issue,” said one of the health officials.
He said that that in the backdrop of government advisories, that water be boiled for some 20-minutes before drinking, the general public notion has been that the water supplied by the Public Health Engineering (PHE) department isn’t fit for direct consumption.
And while most doctors agree to it, this government hospital has been caught sleeping.
Given the inflow of patients and their attendants from across far and wide of Kashmir, not all are expected to be carrying along potable water from home at the hospital in Srinagar.
While those who can afford to buy bottled drinking water from open markets, don’t mind spending Rs 15 to 20 for a litre, others have no options but to bank on the tap. The fresh water consumption from tap, on the other hand, ships with health risks.
“This is a known fact now that tap water is just not safe for consumption unless purified through methods like boiling or specialized filtration,” said a leading Gastroenterologist, requesting not to be named.
Meanwhile doctors including the authorities at this SKIMS run JVC hospital are accused of coming to work late.
Patients alleged that many doctors never complete their duty hours. “Despite heavy flow of patients that OPD usually receive in this hospital, most of the doctors arrive and leave at their own will, forcing patients, no matter how much serious cases they have, to wait for hours and even days,” Habib-Ullah a patient who had come to hospital to visit the doctor, said.
They said that long queues of patients are a common feature at the 0ut-door Patient ward in this hospital. “The OPD of the hospital are supposed to open at 10:30 am but majority of the doctors do not turn up for duty on time, “Shabana a patient told this KNS correspondent.
One of the officials in the health department said that lack of inspection from the Principal Medical college has given leeway to the doctors to show up for duty whenever they deem necessary.
“Most of these doctors either run private clinics or work in private hospitals, “he alleged and said the hospital management is least bothered about the serious lack of punctuality among the doctors.
Patients alleged that Non-availability of medicines add to their miseries and accused that that the doctors prescribe only those medicines which are available with the chemists who are associated with these doctors.
“Many doctors have also developed links with the owners of private nursing homes where they practice after hospital duty.
These doctors also put pressure on the visiting patients to get their treatment done at private nursing homes, where they usually practice, “alleged one of the patients.
He said that due to the acute medicine shortage, the patients are told to buy them from the market.
The Principal, Dr Riyaz Ahmad was not available for comments.