Can­teen near post­mortem ward at GH draws flak

The New Indian Express - - TAMIL NADU -

START­ING a new can­teen on Thoothukudi med­i­cal col­lege hos­pi­tal (ThMCH) premises, in ad­di­tion to the two ex­ist­ing ones, has drawn wide­spread crit­i­cism. While the can­teen’s ex­is­tence is a cul­mi­na­tion of a six-year-old le­gal tus­sle, the choice of spot has not gone down well with peo­ple as it is lo­cated bang op­po­site the post­mortem ward of the hos­pi­tal, rais­ing ques­tions on the un­hy­gienic com­mer­cial prac­tices.

Sources said that in 2012, a pri­vate con­trac­tor filed a case seek­ing a di­rec­tion from the court to al­low him to es­tab­lish a can­teen at ThMCH premises, which was challenged by the hos­pi­tal au­thor­i­ties cit­ing that there are al­ready two can­teens in the premises. How­ever, af­ter seven years, the court had di­rected the ThMCH to al­lo­cate a con­ducive place near ma­ter­nity ward. Fol­low­ing the court or­der, the hos­pi­tal al­lot­ted a place in front of the mor­tu­ary where it is now be­ing set up.

In-pa­tients said that it would be bet­ter to shift the can­teen away from the post­mortem ward as it em­anates foul smell. Demo­cratic Youth Fed­er­a­tion of In­dia dis­trict sec­re­tary MS Muthu said that the can­teen which sup­plies eater­ies and milk for tod­dlers should not be placed near mor­tu­ary as it is un­hy­gienic. More­over, the stench and foul smell of the nearby sep­tic tank may cause health haz­ards, he added.

Res­i­dent Med­i­cal Of­fi­cer (RMO) Dr Si­las Je­ba­mani told Ex­press that the can­teen was set up based on a court or­der and due to space con­straints, the lo­ca­tion was ear­marked fol­low­ing con­sul­ta­tion with the Pub­lic Works Depart­ment (PWD), in or­der to avert pro­ceed­ings of con­tempt of court, he said.

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