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Sunday, April 18, 2021

Pune: 64 posts for doctors vacant at Sassoon Hospital

Sassoon general hospital has 502 dedicated beds for Covid 19 patients and its dean, Dr Murlidhar Tambe, said that the hospital was getting a high number of patients, many of them in critical condition, every day.

Written by Anuradha Mascarenhas | Pune |
Updated: April 7, 2021 8:46:53 pm
A guard outside Sassoon Hospital in Pune. (Express Photo by Pavan Khengre)

At Sassoon General Hospital, the largest government hospital in the state, there is a requirement of at least 64 doctors including physicians, intensivists, anaesthetists and paediatric resident doctors. An advertisement issued on March 16 has so far received a response from only eight doctors.

Sassoon General Hospital, has 502 dedicated beds for Covid-19 patients and its dean, Dr Murlidhar Tambe, said the hospital was getting a high number of patients, many of them in critical condition, every day.

“The patients usually visit two to three private hospitals and after failing to get beds, there they come to Sassoon hospital. Some patients are even brought dead,” Dr Tambe told The Indian Express.

Till date, Sassoon General Hospital has admitted 25,815 patients, of which 6,937 were Covid positive patients while the remaining were suspected with Covid-19 symptoms. A total of 2,349 persons have succumbed at the hospital due to the infection while 3,642 have recovered and been discharged.

Presently, there are 395 Covid-19 patients at the hospital, of whom 87 are critical and on ventilator support. Of the 22 deaths reported on April 5, as many as 10 persons were brought dead to Sassoon General Hospital. Their deaths were confirmed due to Covid-19 as their tests were positive with the infection. On April 6, another seven persons were brought dead to Sassoon General Hospital.

The hospital and B J Government Medical College has also been conducting tests for Covid-19 and as many as 2,997 tests were conducted on April 7, of which 820 samples tested positive.

The hospital administration needs more doctors and had arranged walk-in interviews to recruit healthcare personnel on a contract basis for three months. The hospital requires at least 12 physicians (MD-medicine), eight intensivists, 12 paediatricians (for the ten bedded ICU), 24 resident anaesthetists/MD- medicine/ chest physicians and eight paediatric resident doctors. There is another requirement for nurses and healthcare personnel as non-Covid work is underway at the hospital and most of the staff is engaged in treating these patients.

The interviews were arranged on March 25 and 26 and the response has not been encouraging. The administration has sent out another proposal to the state requesting more doctors.

‘Resident doctors being used as stopgap solution’

A year into the pandemic, resident doctors of government medical colleges, who have been at the frontline of fighting the pandemic, have received no exemption in the fees to be paid for the academic year, where their academics suffered at the cost of Covid duties.

Dr Vijay Yadav, president of Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD), Pune branch, who is in home isolation, said that 51 trainee doctors have been infected with Covid-19, of which 24 are active cases. “We are overburdened,” Dr Yadav said.

“Resident doctors are being used as a stopgap solution and have been shouldering the burden of Covid, doing every minute thing related to patient care. Work that should be done by doctors under the employment of the Health Department is being done by students,” said Dr Prashant Munde, advisor to MARD’s Sassoon unit.

“This is a tremendous waste of human resources and is a ticking time bomb, as this decision will lead to a generation of inadequately trained ‘specialists’ and doctors and will leave our healthcare system in even worse shape than at present,” stated a memorandum submitted on Wednesday to Dr T P Lahane, director of Medical Education and Research.

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