Delay costs life of Siwan mishap victim
PATNA: It has taken a death for the railways to realise that the facilities at the state’s premier medical institution - the Patna Medical College Hospital (PMCH) - are woefully inadequate to tackle critical emergency cases.
Yet, it is not prepared to shift critically injured victims of Wednesday’s train accident at Siwan to higher medical centres like the AIIMS, New Delhi, as advised by PMCH specialists here. On Saturday, the railways had only agreed to reimburse the transportation and medical cost of Manjesh Mishra - one of the two critically injured victims of Wednesday’s train mishap - whose family opted out of the PMCH and took him to Heritage hospital, Benaras.
This was after Suraj Kumar Sharma, 22, who sustained grievous head injuries in the HowrahKathgodam Express mishap at Siwan, died at the PMCH late on Friday evening. Sharma was admitted to the surgical intensive care unit of the PMCH and died of cardio-respiratory failure at 11.50pm on Friday.
With this, the death toll in Wednesday’s train mishap went up to nine. Immediately after Sharma’s death, Mishra’s family members insisted that the PMCH authorities discharge their kin, to which the hospital agreed. Mishra was admitted to the surgical ICU bed number 4, while Sharma, who succumbed to his injuries, was on bed number 5.
In fact, associate professor Dr IS Thakur, the unit incharge under whom Mishra and Sharma were admitted, had verbally requested the railways to shift the two critically injured victims to a higher medical centre, preferably AIIMS, New Delhi, but to no avail.
Confirming this, Dr Thakur told HT: “Given the condition of the patients as well as that of the PMCH surgical ICU, I insisted that the railways shift both Sharma and Mishra to the AIIMS, New Delhi, by air ambulance. Railway doctors from Gorakhpur, Benaras and Danapur told me that they had spoken to the railway board. However, by what I could gather after talking to them, the railways had agreed to reimburse Mishra’s transportation cost to Benaras.”
Most beds in the surgical ICU of the PMCH do not even have functional basic apparatus for round-the-clock monitoring of a patient’s pulse, blood pressure and oxygen level, a fact Dr Thakur confirmed. As such, these have to be recorded manually by doctors. “Ours is an apology of an ICU. The nonfunctional apparatus have been brought to the attention of the authorities,” added Dr Thakur.
The collision site at Siwan.