Kidney patients suffer for manpower dearth at Noakhali hospital

Published : 31 Jan 2023 08:53 PM

In 2018, a 'Kidney Dialysis Unit' was launched in Noakhali General Hospital with 250 beds to ensure the service of kidney patients. As this kidney unit is the only institution in Greater Noakhali (Noakhali, Feni, Lakshmipur), patients from the three districts including the neighboring Cumilla and Chandpur districts are also receiving treatment here. Nevertheless, the doctors and nurses on duty are constantly struggling to provide services due to the shortage of manpower in the institution. The hospital authorities hope that they can improve the quality of medical services by providing sufficient work force. It is known that a kidney dialysis unit with 20 beds was set up in the 250-bed Noakhali General Hospital on September 17, 2018, including 12 negative beds, 2 hepatitis B virus positive beds and 6 hepatitis C virus positive beds. There are 20 beds for dialysis and 16 beds for inpatients. Five more dialysis beds were brought in December last year, but they are yet to be installed. As the dialysis fee is only 400 Tk, the pressure of kidney patients is increasing here every day. About 41 thousand patients have received services from this unit since its establishment. As dialysis costs 2,500 to 3,000 Tk each time in a private hospital, it is not possible for many to be treated in a private hospital. Due to the low cost, the number of kidney patients is increasing every day, but the treatment of the officials is happy, the admitted patients and their relatives.

The hospital authorities say that 1 government appointed consultant, 3 medical officers, 22 senior staff nurses are working daily to ensure the services of the admitted patients. In addition, 4 medical assistants, 1 medical technologist, 5 medical technicians, 3 receptionists, 2 supervisors, 6 security, 10 ward boys and 6 nannies are working on contractual outsourcing. In addition to recruitment of manpower on contract basis, the unit requires 10 more nurses to provide quality services. Apart from dialysis, catheter, permanent catheter, renal biopsy, AV fistula patients are also being treated in this institution. Since its inception, the unit has deposited about one and a half crore rupees in the state exchequer. By providing necessary manpower and all kinds of support, it will be possible to deposit more money from the institution to the state treasury.

Some people working in the hospital say that due to manpower shortage, everyone including the doctors and nurses on duty are constantly having to do extra work outside of the regular routine. Due to this, patients are deprived of quality medical services. As a result, it is expected that the authorities will ensure better quality services to patients by appointing sufficient labor.

A relative of an admitted patient named Monir Hossain said that his mother was diagnosed with kidney problems four months ago. After that, he was admitted to Noakhali Kidney Unit last 10 days. He is currently in good health due to the sincerity of the hospital staff. Hospitals have fewer doctors and nurses than patients. Since kidney problem is a major problem of human body, it is necessary to ensure good quality of treatment to those who come here for treatment, for which it is necessary to recruit the necessary manpower.

Motusi Drong, in charge of the kidney unit, said that we have a shortage of work force in several positions, including nurses. If sufficient labor is appointed, we will be able to work to ensure quality service to the patients admitted to this unit.

Kidney specialist Doctor Fazle Elahi Khan said that the pressure of patients in the kidney unit is constantly increasing. With only 20 beds, many patients are kept waiting for treatment. Out of 20 machines, sometimes a few break down. Along with manpower, it is also important to increase the number of machines and beds here.

Acknowledging the manpower crisis, the supervisor of Noakhali General Hospital Dr Helal Uddin said that although the entire hospital has 250 beds, it is difficult to run a 150 bed hospital with the amount of manpower available here. 

More than 60 patients are receiving dialysis services daily in the kidney unit, which increases to fifteen hundred at the end of the month. Our manpower is very less compared to dialysis. The official said that the quality of service will be increased by arranging the appointment of manpower by talking to the higher authorities.