MIRPURKHAS: The Mirpur­khas Civil Hospital faces a serious shortage of medical officers, specialists and paramedical staff, which has adversely affected quality of healthcare services being provided to poor patients.

Sources in the health department said that several posts of specialists and medical officers were lying vacant which had not been filled for years despite repeated complaints to secretary of health and administration of the hospital.

Posts for gynaecologist (BPS-18 and 19) had been vacant for a long time and there was no physician after the retirement of the physician working in the hospital, Dr Balchand, said the sources.

About a decade ago, a radiologist was sincerely performing his duties at the hospital but unfortunately he had to resign from service after he was falsely accused of being involved in the theft of an ultrasound machine.

Since his departure, the post had not been filled and necessary documents, including X-ray films, had to be sent to Hyderabad civil hospital radiologist for advice, inordinately delaying reports in accident and criminal cases, said sources.

The only surgeon serving at the civil hospital, Dr Abdul Rehman, was transferred to Digri taluka hospital some time ago, rendering the surgical ward idle and forcing the hospital to refer patients in need of surgery to Liaquat University Hospital, Hyderabad, they said.

The sources said that a post of ultrasonologist remained vacant and there was at present no orthopaedic surgeon in the hospital after the retirement of the surgeon a few years back. As a result, the patients were being referred to Hyderabad and private hospitals.

The sources said that there was also a serious shortage of male and female paramedical staff since no new staff had been appointed for a long time. Besides, 27 posts of male and female medical officers were also lying vacant, said the sources.

Civil Surgeon Dr Mohammad Anwer Palari admitted there was acute shortage of doctors and paramedical staff as well as specialists at the civil hospital and said that after Sindh government had announced recruiting over 5,000 doctors higher authorities had assured him the hospital would also get the required number of doctors to overcome its problems.

He said that he was getting the hospital’s buildings repaired with the help of philanthropists and improving the system by replacing damaged beds, cleaning wards and restoring drainage system by repairing 45 gutters.

But a “mafia” was creating hurdles in his work instead of encouraging him to improve the system, he regretted.

Published in Dawn, August 16th, 2017

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