PATNA/BHUBANESWAR: Mounds of construction waste, bricks and mud lie heaped in front of AIIMS Patna. Construction workers soldier away on the foundation of a new wing that is coming up. A crane hauling up a bagful of cement can be seen nearby. The medical institute, which started functioning in 2012, is still a work in progress.
“More than 90 per cent work on creating infrastructure is over, the rest will be completed in four-five months,” said Dr Prabhat Kumar Singh, who took up the reins of AIIMS Patna last February.
However, the institute is dogged by absence of emergency and trauma services; lack of crucial clinical departments; massive shortage of faculty and non-faculty staff; and absence of postgraduate programmes.
Eight state-of-the-art operation theatres became functional last month along with a new OPD building and a blood bank. There are 400 beds in the indoor patient department. Some 200 more are set to be added by July.
“Currently, we have 41 functional departments, both clinical and non-clinical. Work on emergency and trauma services is nearing completion and it will be fully functional next month,” said Dr Singh.
In contrast, AIIMS Bhubaneswar wears a clean and finished look. It started functioning six years ago but its services are hobbled by a huge shortfall in staff. It has a daily patient load of 3,000 but is dependent on AIIMS Delhi because there aren’t enough doctors. There are only 50 junior doctors and 120 senior residents against the requirement of 300 and 327, respectively. The 520-bed hospital has less than 400 nurses against the sanctioned strength of 1,376. There are only 180 faculty members against the sanctioned strength of 305.
The institute has yet to get its own oxygen plant and medical gas pipeline. A lot of sophisticated equipment is lying unused due to lack of trained technicians and professionals to operate them. Of two MRI machines, one has yet to be installed.
On the positive side, it has 43 departments and 12 superspecialty departments. But no appointment has been made yet for nephrology and gastro-intestinal surgery departments. “We’ve been conducting more than 700 surgeries a month in nine OTs. Hopefully, the oxygen plant and modular OTs will be made operational by July-end,” said Dr Sachidananda Mohanty, Medical Superintendent.