The Bold Voice of J&K

Safe hospitals?

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The Odisha hospital fire tragedy should work as an eye opener for those who take life cheap and healthcare management lightly. The incident should be a wakeup call for those who are in hospital and healthcare management especially in government run hospitals in Jammu and Kashmir.  This privately run Odisha hospital tragedy claimed lives of 21 people and injuries to over a hundred others in the absence of no proper fire-fighting equipment  and safety process which in one way reflect the true picture prevailing in the government hospitals of the state. The Govt Medical College and Hospital in Jammu is prone to falling victim to fire accidents the reasons are best known to the people at the top.  The last January fire in the hospital has raised questions whether it was accident or a cover up. The late evening fire had gutted large damaged material as an attempt to dodge the internal audit of junk items which is pre requisite process before auctioning the old stuff. The incident had exposed the alleged unholy nexus between the elements active in bungling.  The incident did expose the faulty fire fighting system kept in place in the hospital. Raising question over tall claims of hospital management about state of art fire fighting system the incident was an indicator to lackadaisical and casual approach of management. This was not first fire incident to happen, number of times the small and major fire incidents have been reported at GMC and Hospital Jammu but after the incident everything returns to usual and nothing is learnt from previous accidents. Fire hazards are the last thing one expects in a hospital so there is a need to conduct safety audit of hospitals in Jammu and Kashmir  like GMCH  Super Specialty Hospital, the Shree Maharaja Gulab Singh Hospital and many private nursing homes in Jammu so that any large casualty can be avoided at the time of any tragedy in these medical institutions. More appalling  would be if these institutes are found having no fire safety certificate. The only remedy to such negligence and flagrant flouting of fire safety norms is swift and exemplary punishment to those responsible for such negligence.

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