TURA | May 26, 2019:

The absence of a resident doctor from a Public Health Centre in West Garo Hills has angered the public who complained that rather than attending to the people at the PHC, he ‘prefer’ attending patients in his private chamber.

This has led to a complaint being lodged with the deputy commissioner of WGH, Ram Singh over the matter asking him for a serious investigation on the workings of the PHC and its doctor, Noor Ain Khan.

To protest against the absence of the doctor, the students and teachers of a school in New Bhaitbari along with the All Meghalaya Minority Students Union (AMMSU) on Saturday held a protest in front of the Bhaitbari PHC.

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It was also alleged that the resident doctor had refused to treat a teacher from the school as he was too busy attending his private chamber.

The Bhaitbari PHC is one of the busiest hospitals in the region with hundreds of patients visiting on a daily basis.

According to the complainants, the problem arose when a teacher from the school suffered a heart complication. The teacher was immediately rushed to the Bhaitbari PHC for treatment along with other teachers.

“We reached the hospital at 10 am but found no doctor at the hospital. However, he was there in his private chamber and charged us Rs 300 for the prescription from his private chamber,” said the complainants.

The condition of the patient did not improve leading the teachers to once again reach the hospital at 10:30 am even after which the doctor still hadn’t reached the hospital and was still in his chamber.

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“He was still checking patients and had closed the door to the room. He misbehaved with us when we asked for his help as the patient was not improving. We asked him to at least refer the patient elsewhere. He asked us to get a slip from the OPD, which we paid Rs 5 for. We waited another half an hour for him but he still had not come. When we checked we again found him treating patients in his private chamber,” they added.

In the end, the teachers took an appointment for a private consultation and asked him to help with an ambulance but he refused despite there being an ambulance. Help only come through after they called the 108 service.

“This is extremely condemnable. He is a government doctor and needs to ensure he attends the PHC first. How is he allowed to attend private practice even during OPD hours? He is hardly ever present for his duty. It is the compounder who acts as the doctor at the PHC,” said AMMSU president, Nur Islam.

He further alleged that the ambulance of the PHC was only being provided to patients if they could pay the rent.

“We want an investigation into the selfish act of the doctor and how he is allowed to neglect his duty to make a fast buck on the side,” demanded the NGO.



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