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Residents struggle to get abandoned kids’ hospital reopened

As the State and City face shortage of hospitals to treat Covid patients and with demand only increasing, Bengalureans and resident welfare associations are trying hard to help the needy.

Published: 03rd May 2021 03:01 AM  |   Last Updated: 03rd May 2021 03:01 AM   |  A+A-

The abandoned children’s hospital at Rajarajeshwari Nagar  in Bengaluru

Express News Service

BENGALURU: As the State and City face shortage of hospitals to treat Covid patients and with demand only increasing, Bengalureans and resident welfare associations are trying hard to help the needy. At Rajarajeshwari Nagar, local residents and a team of Ayush doctors have found a 400-bed abandoned children’s hospital, which can be converted into a makeshift Covid Care Centre (CCC).

It will be a critical facility in fighting the pandemic as it has an oxygen supply line too. But the present owner of the property is not keen to give it up. He told The New Indian Express that he wants to demolish the building and create an apartment complex instead. “The building does not have any facilities as people claim. It does not have the power supply too. I don’t see any need for it to be used as a CCC,” he said But local residents and doctors are not convinced. “We have seen this place. It does have all the facilities.

It only needs to be cleaned up, some beds added and some of those beds connected to oxygen lines. The property owner does not want to give it free of cost,” said an RR Nagar resident. Dr Raghavendra Rao M, Director of Ayush and another resident of RR Nagar, said that the building was functioning as a children’s hospital till 2008, but closed after funding from the Malaysian Doctors’ Foundation stopped. It was later taken over by a private hospital chain, but it too could not run the facility.

“Now the building is abandoned. It should ideally be reopened and converted into a CCC. Politicians and BBMP officials are trying to convince the property owner to reopen it on a temporary basis. The developer might be in a better position to understand as his brother is in ICU,” he said. Meanwhile, doctors at Bowring Hospital are requesting the government to drop a proposal to convert PMSIS building, the only government-run super-specialty hospital in Bengaluru, into a Covid hospital.

“The government has forgotten that there are non- Covid patients too. Last time, during the lockdown, the hospital was closed and it was used as the resting area for doctors and nurses. It is the only multi-specialty hospital in the state, run by the government, where patients are given treatment at a nominal cost. If this is also converted into a Covid hospital, where will other patients go,” asked Bowring Hospital doctors.



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