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Quality healthcare in Ranchi soon

State-of-the-art medical infrastructure, cutting-edge technology, an outstanding pool of specialists and highest standard of affordable therapy — if this is healthcare utopia, Ranchi will find it soon.

A bevy of reputable private players is all set to make forays into the medical sector, gifting the capital — hitherto dependent on state-run Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) for quality and pocket-friendly treatment — a bouquet of multi-specialty, super-specialty and multi-super-specialty hospitals by the end of 2012.

Eminent cardiac surgeon of the country Dr Naresh Trehan, whose Medanta in Gurgaon offers global healthcare standards along with clinical research, innovation and education, is learnt to have evinced interest in opening a wing of the much-touted medicity in Ranchi. If sources are to be believed, he is already holding talks with the state government for land in the capital.

Another multi-speciality hospital is on the anvil, courtesy city-based businessman Amit Sahu. He has promised the best of healthcare at his upcoming Santevita Hospital by mid-2012.

Unconfirmed reports also said that St John's National Academy of Health Sciences, Bangalore, is planning a medical college in the capital, while Calcutta-based Medica super-specialty hospital has Ranchi in mind as part of its 2012 expansion plans, which will see as many as 10 of its centres across eastern India.

A week ago, big name in cardiac care Fortis Escorts Heart Institute launched its unit in the city in association with Alam Hospital and Research Centre.

Orchid Medical Centre, owned by a city-based builder, came up six months ago. And, in the last couple of years, several other health hubs like Apollo Hospital and Rani Children's Hospital have set shop in the capital.

Undoubtedly, Ranchi is witnessing a medicare boom. The question is why?

"Though Ranchi has been the capital of Jharkhand since the state was created over a decade ago, it has been only two-three years that the city is experiencing a sudden influx of people. Reasons are many. Mushrooming malls and food joints are creating employment opportunities like never before. More the people, greater the need for health services. It is but natural for the health sector to cash in on the change," said Subir Roy, the chief medical officer of Orchid.

Roy maintained that there had always been a demand for investment in the sector, but investors were hard to find. "Ever since we opened our centre, the OPD has remained crowded almost every day. This explains the urgent need for a good specialty hospital," he said.

"Dearth of decent state hospitals and medical colleges is another reason behind private players entering the fray. In days to come, we are going to see private medical colleges like in Bangalore and more specialised hospitals," he added.

Every investment is market-oriented. So, another viable theory is that since metros are now saturated, private players are focusing on tier-II and tier-III cities and towns.

"This is why almost everyone is vying for places like Ranchi, where the scope of investment in healthcare is immense given the government's failure in delivering services right from primary health centres to hospitals," said Gaurav Roy, deputy manager, Santevita Hospital.

Innovation will be the key at this 80-bed health hub, he said. "Multi-specialty/super-specialty centres are the need of the hour. Except cardiac care, we will have almost every discipline. Our USP will be a separate maternity wing with stress on normal delivery. We will have experts from Sweden," he added.

Irrespective of age, sex or geographical location, everyone faces health problems because of changing lifestyle these days. This again is prompting investors to reach out to people everywhere.

"Till recently, Kolkata was the nearest option for good and budget health services. The financially fortunate could look up to Delhi and Mumbai. But travelling, accommodation etc. took a toll on both the body and mind. Now, things will be different. What you need, we will make it available in your city and state," said Tabassum Hassan, the CEO of Alam Hospital and Research Centre.

With private players promising so much, the government too is feeling the need for upgrade. A testimony to this is the sadar hospital's 500-bed expansion plan to ease pressure on RIMS. Though the pace of work is tardy, officials offer that once completed the revamped hospital will "certainly help address healthcare needs of the downtrodden in a holistic manner". source-telegraphindia.com

RIMS to ensure uniform code for fourth-grade employees

RANCHI: Health minister Hemlal Murmu has issued a show-cause notice to the director of the Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) seeking an explanation as to why the fourth-grade employees working in the institute do not wear uniform and display their identity cards.

In a letter issued to the RIMS director, Tulsi Mahato, the minister has expressed displeasure at the earlier directive being ignored. "To avoid entry of unauthorized people in the institute, norms were issued to ensure that every worker at the RIMS wears uniform and displays his or her ID-card," Murmu said adding that a letter to this effect was sent on November 25, 2010.

He added during casual visits to the hospital he, as well as officials of health department, noticed that the instruction was not being followed.

Responding to the show-cause notice, Mahato said most of the workers wear uniform and fresh instructions were issued to follow the guidelines strictly. "I will send a reply to the show-cause notice and have already issued instructions in this regard," he said. Mahato clarified that some of the workers sought an excuse as uniform being soiled or wet during rainy season responding to which the management allowed them to attend duty in plain clothes.source-articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com


RIMS to change old dialysis units

RANCHI: For nearly five years, patients at the Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) were put on a haemodialysis machine that infused water contaminated with rust.

However, observations made by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) during audits from 2005-2010 have prompted it to put things on the right track.

It was after CAG observation that the old units of reverse osmosis membrane separation system (RO plant) and de-mineral (DM) plant were replaced. Currently, of the four dialysis units three are functional. The fourth is out of order for want of certain components.

The CAG found that purchase order for supply and installation of four units of haemodialysis machines were placed by the RIMS in February 2005 at a price of Rs 23.4 lakh on turnkey basis. "The firm installed the machines in October 2005 without supplying the two critical components i.e. RO plant and DM plant. The machines were made operational by using the old RO and DM plant supplied in 1999. As these components were very old, water contaminated with rust was being infused in the system causing complications to the patients," the report said.

Responding to this observation, the RIMS authorities pressed the matter with the suppliers and obtained new components, payment against which was already made. Dr Sanjay Singh said the three of the four machines were operational after installation of the RO and DM system, whereas the fourth would resume operation when certain parts became available in India.

The RIMS also purchased one cardiac defibrillator, three sets of ventilators, two operation theatre (OT) tables and two OT lights for the oncology department under the state plan for Rs 35.64 lakh between December 2007 and August 2009. But the machinery lay unused as the OT in the department was non-functional. Despite initial efforts, the oncology department could never become a fully operational unit.

A total of 18 beds were earmarked for the department and an OPD was started. However, the radiology unit never came into existence. A senior doctor at the medicine department said oncology was considered functional only when medicine oncology, surgical oncology and radio oncology facilities were available. "We are dealing with cases related to cancer in medicinal and surgical units separately," he said.

Asked about the purchase of equipment and machinery worth Rs 9.54 crore during 2005-10 as highlighted in the CAG report, RIMS director Tulsi Mahato said machinery and equipment were procured by an agency of the Union government and unless necessary preparations for their installation and operation were made it was not possible for the institute to use them. "Super-speciality centres required these machines and the building for such centres are yet to come up as a result of which machines and equipment are being used elsewhere," he said.

Mahato said following the CAG objections, most of the machines were either being used for medical purposes or for teaching and training purposes in the college. "We will soon advertise for appointment of doctors and technicians to operate these machines, once the super-speciality building is ready to install them."

Proposal for Super-speciality centres at RIMS

RANCHI: Health minister Hemlal Murmu convened a meeting of senior officials of the Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences, public works department and others related to the construction of super-speciality centres on the RIMS campus on Tuesday.

Murmu also visited the construction site and directed the officials to speed up the work. Construction of four super-speciality centres at the RIMS was started in 2004 by then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee but the facility is yet to come up.

Talking to TOI, RIMS director Tulsi Mahato said, "We have given a deadline for completion of the work by March 2012, but it seems that it may take a couple of months more," he said.

The RIMS has initiated the process of appointment of medical experts for the upcoming super-speciality centres. "Once the building is complete, we will start installing machinery and equipment and ensure that all the departments become functional," said Mahato.

The super-speciality facilities include oncology, nephrology-cum-urology and cardiology centres.

RIMS under CAG scanner

 RANCHI: "Blood donation is the greatest donation of mankind" the phrase commonly used by medical fraternity to receive blood from donors seems to be not going well with the state's premiere health institute the Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS).

Even as the doctors admit that blood is one of the most precious things man can donate and save life of others, it is because of lapses on part of RIMS that 699 units of blood had to be discarded by the institute simply because of lapses on its part.

The lapses ranged from receiving donations without proper and mandatory checks, improper storage and handling and also storage discrepancies under proper refrigeration.

The startling facts have been revealed in the report of Comptroller and Auditor General of India, published from the data found till March 2010. According to the survey conducted at RIMS blood bank, it was revealed that during 2006-2009, the institute received 41,120 units of blood as donation out of which 699 units were discarded for various reasons in these four years. Though in terms of donation that the institute received, the figure of units of blood discarded appears minimal but given the inequitable importance of blood, loss of even one unit is considered derogatory for the reputation of an institution like RIMS.

While the CAG reports holds RIMS management accountable for this priceless loss, the RIMS director has a different argument for the CAG remarks. Director Tulsi Mahato said that certain units of blood could have been discarded because of mishandling or delay in refrigeration but maximum units were found to be infected with some antigen and were misfit to be transfused. "Only 35 units of blood expired of around 40,000 units of donation received because of storage beyond permissible time period," he said, adding that blood units when kept in proper refrigeration for more than 30 days, it gradually loses its properties and discarded as per medical parameters.

The CAG report specifically says that out of 699 units of blood discarded over four years, 176 were found to be haemolysed because of various reasons which includes improper storage and 35 units were stored beyond permissible time, the rest of them were found to be infected with some or other kind of virus or antigen. Seven units were found to be positive in venereal disease research laboratory (VDRL) test, 172 units were infected with malarial parasite, 53 units tested positive to hepatitis C virus, 13 units tested positive against HIV infection and as many as 243 units tested positive for Hbs Ag (Hepatitis B) viruses.

The blood donations were collected without conducting pathological tests on the blood sample of donor before receiving the donation as a result of which they had to be discarded after the tests were carried out.

Babu Mani Baski, one of the doctors of department of surgery in RIMS, said that conducting the pathological tests on sample of blood donor was literally impossible. "We cannot ask the donor to give a sample and wait for test results to come before donating blood because some of the tests take more than 12 hours for the study to be completed," he said.

Baski added that before accepting donation, standard references are used which include seeking medical history of the donor, body weight and confirmation that the donor has not consumed alcohol in the past 72 hours. "Many times donors are unaware about their own disease conditions but volunteer to donate blood; it is only after the test that they come to know their disease condition but in that case we have to discard the "contaminated" blood which can obviously not be classified as "life-saving or priceless" he said. source-timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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