PESHAWAR: A joint inspection team has recommended to the government to take disciplinary action against the medical superintendent, doctors, nurses and other staff of district headquarters hospital Ghalanai in Mohmand tribal district for absenteeism.

Official sources said that the team recommended the action after visiting the hospital on Saturday. Majority of the staff of the hospital was absent, according to a report presented to Peshawar Commissioner Riaz Khan Mehsud.

The joint inspection team comprising additional deputy commissioner and assistant commissioner of Mohmand found that only skin and child OPD was operational while there was no doctor in medicine, gynae, surgery, ENT, eye and orthopaedic OPDs.

The two-page report described attendance of staff, from medical superintendent to the lowest tiers, highly disappointing. It said that seven doctors in BPS-18 never attended the hospital for a single day while each of them was drawing Rs450,000 salary per month. It said that nine emergency medical officers never joined duty but each of them continued to draw Rs350,000 salary per month.

Inspection team finds MS, most of other employees absent

The report said that of 28 medical officers, only four were present and 24 were absent on Saturday. Of the 28 nurses, only seven were present and 21 were absent, it added.

The hospital has 30 Class-IV employees and except nine none of them has marked attendance during the last 15 days. The medical superintendent himself was absent during the visit of the inspection team.

The report said that the medical superintendent office instead of recommending disciplinary proceedings under rules against the delinquent staffers, made nominal deductions from their salaries, which was merely an eyewash.

In dental OPD, surgeries are being conducted by unqualified person. The inspection team also found some expired filling material and chemicals, which can cause different kinds of oral diseases. All dental procedures are done without sterilisation of instruments. The dental surgeon is not regular in his duty, according to the report.

It said that about 12 medical officers were working as specialists because the position of specialists had not been filled. The medical officers were working on their original positions, it added.

The report said that condition of operation theatre was very deplorable. It added that the operation theatre was littered with blood and sterility chain was not maintained. The private rooms of patients were illegally occupied by unauthorised persons for residential purpose, it added.

The inspectors found expired pregnancy, HIV, HBS and HCV strips in clinical laboratory. The medicines were not stored properly. Cold Chain was not maintained. No technical staff was present.

The gynaecology ward has catchment population of 4,80,000 but not a single doctor was present and majority of the patients were referred to Peshawar and private hospitals. The ambulance is in personal use of head clerk, according to the report.

The inspection team has recommended that in view of irregularities, absenteeism, malpractices and mismanagement, on part of the medical superintendent and other staff, a formal inquiry should be ordered under the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa E&D Rules 2011 for gross misconduct and inefficiency.

Fake attendance marking is a norm in the hospital and CCTV data should be retrieved so as to determine actual days of absenteeism of staffers to hold them responsible. Besides, bio metric system should be installed in the hospital.

It said that the medical superintendent should be directed to report to the office of Directorate General Health Services with immediate effect and a competent officer should be posted there and recoveries should be made from the staff for the period of absenteeism.

Published in Dawn, August 30th, 2021

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