COIMBATORE: A 38-year-old man, who suffered a fracture in an accident last week, awaits surgery at the Orthopaedic ward of the Coimbatore Medical College Hospital. His surgery to set right the broken leg was scheduled for Friday, but was postponed due to lack of water at the operation theatre. Along with him are two others also in the same department awaiting surgery, and many others throughout the hospital that has 16 operation theatres.
One of the surgeons said, “We had scheduled six surgeries for Wednesday keeping in mind the long week-end ahead, but by morning when we were done with three surgeries, the water got over. We waited for a couple of hours, and had to reschedule the rest of the operations.”
This continued through Thursday and Friday, and on Friday the issue was raised with the hospital authorities, who arranged some water. But the shortage did not end and some surgeries were postponed again. The surgeon said that this was the case with all the operation theatres. According to hospital authorities, the CMCH requires five lakh litres of water daily, with a minimum requirement of three lakh litres. But these days, as a result of drought, they are not getting even one lakh litre. PWD officials who are in-charge of the hospital area, said that this situation has been created due to lack of supply from Siruvani dam.
“The last few days, the hospital authorities had arranged water from the city corporation in lorries, but that has been inconsistent due to Pongal holidays. More than six months back, we sent a proposal of Rs 1.5 crore for a sewage treatment plant at the hospital premises to the State administration. If the proposal gets a green signal, the recycle plant will be completed in 3-4 months,” said the official. The hospital has nine borewells, of which three has already dried up. But the rest could soon dry up too, and hence they are looking at alternatives.
When asked about the situation, Dean of CMCH, A Edwin Joe said, “We are conducting all emergency operations and are rescheduling those that are elective. We are looking at a borewell at Valankulam Tank on PWD land, which will be dug with the help of a sponsor. In the next two days, we will finalise it, and approach the district administration. But that would last only until the depleting water table gives away. After that, its dark times again. Hence, it’s high time the proposal for the sewage treatment plan is approved and it becomes a reality.”