Abid Hussain

270 days & counting: No ENT surgery done in Budgam hospital

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Budgam, Mar 14: Not a single surgery of Ear-Nose-Throat (ENT) has been performed at the Aga Syed Yousuf Memorial (ASYM) district hospital here for the last nine months.

The reason being that follower the transfer of lone ENT specialist from the hospital, his replacement is refusing to perform surgeries, citing non-availability of instruments, sources said.

They said around 250 patients were denied treatment here in the past nine months as they needed surgeries. "The ENT section on a daily basis caters to more than 90 patients, but those requiring surgeries are being referred to other hospitals."

So the dysfunctional ENT's operating theatre has compelled poor patients to spend thousands at private clinics.

"I needed an immediate surgery and went to JVC. But, I was given date after four months, therefore, I visited private clinic and spend thousands there," a patient said.

Another patient, Irfan Bhat, who is up in arms against the administration, said that he was asked by former ENT in June last year to come after two months for surgery.

"Since August last year, I have been coming here, but I'm not being operated," he added.

Meanwhile, locals said that they have raised this issue with concerned officials, but nothing tangible was done. "Our pleas are falling on the deaf ears," they rued.

According to locals, Budgam hospital has "gone to the dogs".

"Our hospital is understaffed and lacks basic amenities, including space, digital X-ray, adequate washrooms, CT-scan, MRI etc.," Abul Hassan, a social activist said.

Notably, as per reports, the referral rate from the Budgam hospital is high in comparison to other district hospitals.

Recently, on seeing the deteriorating condition of the ASYM Hospital, senior Hurriyat leader and president Anjuman Sharie Shian, Agha Syed Hassan, issued a 30-day ultimatum to the administration.

Agha Hassan in a Friday sermon had said, "If administration fails to provide better healthcare facilities within the stipulated time, then I will give a ‘hospital chalo’ call."

When contacted, Medical Superintendent of the hospital, Dr Deeba said, "We have  ordered ENT instruments from Germany and very soon we will start operating patients."

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