AMID ALLEGATIONS that several routine surgeries scheduled at the Banaras Hindu University’s Institute of Medical Sciences (IMS) were deferred on Friday, owing to anaesthesiologists being busy hosting a three-day national conference, the BHU late at night claimed that all elective operations were carried out according to schedule.
The department of anaesthesiology is hosting the 9th Annual National Conference of Indian College of Anaesthesiologists beginning Friday.
Last week, the department of anaesthesiology in IMS had written to the department of orthopaedic surgery, requesting that elective and routine surgeries in BHU’s hospitals either be deferred or taken up before the conference. However, emergency OT, ICU, and OPD services would continue as usual.
The department of orthopaedic surgery, however, wrote back to anaesthesiology head Dr P Ranjan, saying it could not suspend all surgeries slated on October 27 and 28. October 29 is a Sunday, when usually no routine surgeries are scheduled.
Speaking to The Indian Express, Dr Amit Rastogi, head of orthopaedic surgery, said: “Emergency surgeries, like cases of accidents, are taking place at the trauma centre. But patients in elective surgery, regarding which the notification said that surgeries would have to be suspended, would be greatly inconvenienced. We did not want that. So, we asked the anaesthesiology HoD to lend us a few resident doctors to keep at least one operation theatre functional on these days. He agreed and some surgeries are scheduled for today and tomorrow.”
When contacted, Ranjan said that his team acceded to the request and surgeries requested for were carried out on Friday. “Over 200 delegates are participating in the conference and the whole department is involved. This is what happens in other departments as well when they are hosting a conference in IMS. It was but natural for no one to be available for routine surgeries. All surgeons were okay with this except a few. So, we provided for those who requested anaesthesia services,” he added.
Later in the day, S K Gupta, professor in charge of the BHU Trauma Centre — through institute’s public relations officer — dismissed social media “reports” about suspension of surgeries as “baseless and mischievous with the aim of tarnishing the image and reputation of trauma centre as well as BHU’s Sir Sunderlal Hospital”.
He claimed that all scheduled elective operations were carried out on Friday. “Today, the scheduled cases were carried out in the orthopaedics elective OT (4 cases), plastic surgery OT (13 cases) and neurosurgery OT… Thus, it is obvious that no cases were cancelled due to the anaesthesia conference… It would also be worthwhile to lodge a complaint with cyber cell of the district police to find out from where these messages appeared on social media,” he said in a statement.