While the State spends Rs. 10.3 crores on the medical treatment of the MLA’s and their families, the common man left with no other choice, are forced to spends days on a stretcher or a wheelchair, due to lack of beds in the medicine wards of Goa Medical College and Hospital, Bambolim.
GMC, while trying their best to provide treatment for the people, medicine wards are full every day, thus making it difficult for patients to avail of a bed, while MLA’s fly to super specialty hospitals in India and abroad for treatment.
Two days after the media exposed the health bills of MLA’s, another shocking disclosure by the media has been brought to light.
A visit to the State’s premier government hospital reveals that the patients are craving for help.
Patients in the medicine wards (which are full almost every day) are lying on stretchers and wheelchairs for days together. The scene was shocking as the patients were put on drips and medication on stretchers and wheelchairs.
When a source at Herald questioned a patient’s relative for how long they have been here, Kamala Nasnodkar said, “My husband has been here for last two days on a stretcher. The nurses and doctors say they will arrange for bed but nothing is done.”
She further stated that since GMC is the best hospital for poor people like them, they have to stay.
John Fernandes, a local from Loutolim, whose father has been admitted in GMC, stated that the DDSSY card while giving free treatment for surgeries and critical illnesses ignores regular diseases like malaria, dengue for which there is no medical insurance. Fernandes further added that his father has been on the stretcher since morning and that there was no option to go to a private hospital.
Another Goan, Ratna Mashelkar said she was told by the doctors if she does not want her relative to be on a stretcher she is free to take him home or to another hospital. Stating that her husband has a liver issue and as it was difficult for them to afford treatment outside, they were forced to stay.
A source from Herald who spoke to the doctors and nurses at GMC said that they have expressed their helplessness at their situation. They said that they are not requesting patients to leave, they continue to treat them, but the lack of beds makes the situation difficult.
While the GMC cannot be blamed for the situation, as the doctors are doing their best to give treatment with whatever resources they have at their disposal, it is the government which needs to think about providing better facilities for citizens.
While the State spent crores for treatment of MLAs as well as their families, a few crores could have been spent on creating two more medicine wards for accommodating patients at GMC itself.
Health Minister Vishwajit Rane, when contacted, said he is aware of the issue but for the situation to improve it would take time. “Till the new South Goa District Hospital and the Super Specialty hospital come up the situation cannot improve,” he said.
When asked whether he has asked the government for more funds to improve GMC infrastructure, he replied, “We take all decisions collectively.”
He further stated that he has been consulting the Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on every issue which affects the people and every decision was being taken collectively.
Stressing on GMC, he said that although GMC is loaded with patients, all help and medication is provided to the visiting patients regularly. Proper care of the patients is taken by the doctors in GMC, he added.
He also said he is available for public 24×7 for their betterment in the State.