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Friday, October 13, 2017
By Steffy Thevar

Councillor gets caged rat to the BMC general body meeting hall to shame the administration over rat bitten patients in civic body hospitals

Three days ago, on October 13, a patient was bitten by a rat in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) run Shatabdi hospital. When no action was taken , on 12 October, a BJP councillor, Kamlesh Yadav brought a caged rat inside the BMC General Body Meeting hall. He held the caged rat right in the middle when the house was in session and the Additional Municipal Commissioner I A Kundan, who is also the chief for civic hospitals was present in the hall. The councillor was immediately asked to vacate the hall by the Mayor.

The two patients who were bitten by rats as they were sleeping woke up to bloodied beds and pillows.  65-year old Shailaben Shah who was admitted due to leg fracture, was bitten on her left leg when she was fast asleep and Pramila Nerurkar, another elderly woman suffered injuries near her left eye on September 29.

The issue became a serious concern as rats have become a health hazard inside the hospital premises where patients from all over the city seek treatment. MLA Chaudhary had also written a letter to Civic chief Ajoy Mehta asking him to look seriously into the matter. In addition to this, the Shatabdi hospital staff is known for overcharging patients for using the toilets. In his letter Chaudhary wrote,

“A probe should be conducted against the guilty officers as patients who require temporary toilet pots are charged Rs. 50 by the hospital staff, and Rs. 20 for changing clothes of the patients and Rs. 100 to provide wheelchair for the patients.”

Saeeda Khan, from NCP presented figures and said, “There are a total of 427 beds in the hospital, and 101 out of 455 posts are vacant in the hospital. We also counted the rat entry points and there are 462 entry points out of which 140 are yet to be closed.”

She also said that there is no in-house pest control policy for BMC hospitals. Khan added that there are around 2,500 OPD patients everyday out of which 500 are admitted and also 40 deliveries per day and with such a mismanaged state of affairs in BMC hospitals, the civic body is playing with the lives of its citizens.

Amidst all the drama, the civic body has now started a probe against the concerned authorities and show cause has been issued with relation to the concerned incident. The nine house keeping mechanisms and four multi-tasking labour organisations meant for the cleaning of the hospital have been sent a show cause notice with regard to the case.

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