KHAMMAM: Unlike other government hospitals, the district headquarters hospital in Khammam is relatively clean but is under-staffed and has no proper facilities with the result that doctors are forced to direct patients to private diagnostic centres and even hospitals.
The 250-bed hospital has at any given point of time at least over 300 in-patients and about 400 more visit for consultation from different parts of the district including the Bhadrachalam Agency area.
Senior officials at the hospital, on condition of anonymity, told Express that several posts have been lying vacant for the last several years. At least two civil surgeons, two assistant civil surgeons, a deputy civil surgeon and six nurses have to be appointed, the officials said, adding specialists like radiologists have also not been appointed for years. More than the staff shortage, the hospital doesn’t have basic diagnostic facilities — MRI scan, ultrasound scan, digital X-ray etc are not available. This may seem common for a government hospital but in tangible terms it means poor patients are forced to shell out thousands of rupees at private diagnostic centres.
Patients with serious complications are generally referred to the MGM Hospital in Warangal or hospitals like the Osmania and Gandhi in Hyderabad. There are reports that due to lack of facilities and frequent referrals, several patients are losing their lives midway to Warangal or Hyderabad. Express couldn’t independently verify these claims.
When contacted, hospital superintendent T Laxman Rao admitted there are a few problems and explained that at least 40 class IV employees must be recruited urgently to attend to the patients. He maintained sanitation was a priority.