Hospital turns patients away in lack of doctors

Published On: August 25, 2016 01:00 AM NPT By: Maheshwor Chamling Rai

UDAYAPUR, Aug 25: Only three doctors treat patients at the District Hospital of Udayapur in Gaighat although it has been allocated a quota of eight. The hospital has not been able to provide quality medical care services in lack of sufficient human resources.

The government has failed to depute doctors to the hospital as per the quota. The 50-bedded hospital has been operating without sufficient manpower since the past three years, according to the Hospital Development Committee.

“We need 12 doctors including specialists. However, what we have right now is one medical superintendent and two medical officers,” informed Dr Bishnu Bahadur Basnet, the hospital's chief. “The concerned ministry has ignored our repeated requests for more doctors,” he added.

Shiva Regmi, chief of Hospital Development Committee, said they will put pressure on the government after the committee holds a meeting on the subject.

“We are forced to refer most of our patients to the hospitals of Biratnagar, Dharan and Kathmandu in lack of specialists and doctors. This is unacceptable,” he said.

Many patients return from the hospital disappointed after they are turned away without proper treatment.

“Many people from rural parts of the district make difficult journey to Gaighat for treatment. However, they are referred to other hospitals almost immediately citing lack of doctors,” said Prem Bahadur Rai, a local of Janti Village Development Committee (VDC).

Rai had accompanied his relative to the district hospital only to be referred elsewhere. “The hospital has big buildings but it does not have specialist doctors who can treat specific diseases,” he said, expressing utter disappointment.

The hospital receives over 150 patients on a daily basis, according to Medical Superintendent Basnet.

Patients of common diseases, like cough, cold and diarrhea to serious ones including AIDS, tuberculosis and cancer visit the hospital. The hospital also receives about 8-10 expecting mothers per day.

The number of patients visiting the hospital rises significantly during monsoon season. According to Basnet, the number of patients easily crosses 300 per day during monsoon. However, service seekers in the district have been deprived of quality medical care services.

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