Short of staff, Punjab health department gives ventilators to private hospitals

Posts of specialists lying vacant, only few joined

Short of staff, Punjab health department gives ventilators to private hospitals

Amid the mounting Covid deaths, life-saving ventilators are gathering dust at various places in Punjab.

Karam Prakash

Tribune News Service

Patiala, May 2

Amid the mounting Covid deaths, life-saving ventilators are gathering dust at various places in the state. The reason: shortage of manpower, especially, anaesthetists to use these ventilators. Many ventilatiors were purchased during the first wave of pandemic.

As per the health department, around 121 posts of anaesthetist and 98 of medicine doctors, along with others, were advertised recently, but only few showed up for the walk-in interview.

Dr Harshinder Kaur, Government Medical College, Patiala

Provide these to tertiary institutes

To ease out the workload and improve quality at tertiary healthcare institutes, ventilators should be provided to sub-divisional levels for better management of patients.

Dr GB Singh, Director, Health and Family Welfare Department, said only 24 specialists, including some anaesthetist, of the total 488 posts had joined the department in the walk-in interview held last week.

Consequent upon the shortage of manpower, the government had to distribute ventilators to private hospitals wherein infrastructure and manpower was already available. Besides, some ventilators have been redistributed in government hospitals taking into consideration the availability of professionals to handle the ventilators in the ICU therein.

Confirming the development, Dr GB said, “We have now redistributed the ventilators to private and government hospitals where required manpower was available. Ironically, some anaesthetists are already posted at sub-divisional level or district hospitals. However, they don’t have the ventilators because these have only been made available at tertiary health care institutes like Government Medical Colleges.

Consequently, the three tertiary Covid healthcare institutes — Patiala, Amritsar and Faridkot — are overwhelmed with Covid patients.

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