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Kashmir private hospitals putting patients’ lives at risk: DAK

Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) on Tuesday said private hospitals in Kashmir valley lack facilities and staff to deal with emergencies.
“That is putting lives of patients at risk,” said DAK President Dr Nisar ul Hassan in a communique.
“Private hospitals do not have critical care units jeopardizing the safety of patients,” he said.
DAK President said they charge hefty sums for surgeries and in case of complications patients are referred to government hospitals. Most of these referred patients are in a critical condition and they either die in transit or reach hospitals in a morbid state.
“Private hospitals deal with obstetric patients without neonatal intensive care units exposing fragile babies to risk,” he said.
Dr Nisar said apart from infrastructural deficiencies, private hospitals do not have critical care specialists and staff to take care of patients in case things go wrong during or after surgeries.
He said these hospitals borrow government doctors for few hours to conduct surgeries and leave patients without care for most of the time.
“They are without essential diagnostic tools like CT scan and MRI, said Dr Nisar adding that even the life-saving medicines used for various emergencies are not available in private hospitals.
He said the private hospitals lack standard treatment protocols, infection control measures, proper bio-waste disposal and proper sterilization techniques. The irrational use of antibiotics is the main cause of antibiotic resistance in our community. The unhygienic medical practices have caused epidemic of hepatitis B and C infection in our population.
Dr Nisar said there is a large chunk of population going to these hospitals, but no attention is being paid to the safety of patients in them.
He said there are no regulations or guidelines for private hospitals and there is no reporting system of complications and deaths in these hospitals.
“Despite lack of infrastructural facilities and staff to handle emergencies, private hospitals have been given licence by directorate of health services risking patients lives,”said Dr Nisar.

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