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H&MED rebuts news regarding deaths reported in SMHS Hospital

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JAMMU: The Health and Medical Education Department (H&MED) has refuted the recent news item titled “3110 deaths reported in SMHS Hospital till November this year”, published in Daily Greater Kashmir dated 26-12-2023.

As per records available with the Hospital, a total of 72,795 patients were admitted as inpatients in the Hospital in the year 2023-24 till 30th November 2023 and the total deaths during the aforementioned period was 2095 including 295 patients brought dead and 838 deaths in causality.

The department, in its communique received here in this regard, stated that in the year 2022-23, 3218 deaths were reported for a figure of 109202 admissions in the Hospital. The gross death rate for 2022-23 was 2.98 and for the year 2023-2024 was 2.87, thereby showing a slight decline this year.

It is crucial to acknowledge the efforts undertaken by the SMHS hospital administration to address the healthcare challenges in the region. As mentioned in the news item, the hospital administration has procured 156 ventilators over the last three years from various companies, aiming to enhance critical care capabilities. 

Additionally, significant infrastructural developments have been initiated, including the construction of a New Emergency Theatre Block, a 16-bedded Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU), and the installation of six new oxygen plants with a capacity of 1000 LPM each. Further, causality wards both surgical and medical have been upgraded. Nero Surgical facilities are provided with causality for critically injured patients with Head Injury. All Radiological including CT, USG, Doppler and other high-end investigations are provided under one roof 24*7 and the reports are available online.

The hospital’s commitment towards improving patient care is evident through ongoing projects such as the extension of the ENT Department and the acquisition of a new CT scan machine in the Department of Radio-diagnosis. These initiatives showcase a proactive approach towards addressing the healthcare needs of the community.

The percentage of death rate reported vis-a-vis IPD figures is well within the normal range and is not alarming, as is indicated in the news item. It is essential to consider various factors contributing to these numbers, such as the complexity of cases, underlying health conditions, and external factors beyond the hospital’s control and the fact that SMHS Hospital is a tertiary care Hospital and generally critical patients are referred to the facility.

“We believe that presenting a balanced perspective on the situation at SMHS Hospital is crucial for fostering a constructive dialogue about healthcare challenges and improvements in the region,” H&MED maintained.

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