The Chief Minister of Odisha
Sub-Lack of human sensitivity in treatment and transparency in the process of dissemination of information on the patients in the COVID hospitals.
As per the standard practice and operating norms in the treatment of patients in the COVID hospitals once a patient is admitted into the hospital the patient goes entirely into the “captivity” of the hospital as the attendants of the patient are not allowed inside. Naturally, the relatives and attendants shall be anxious about the conditions of their patients. But there is no way an attendant can be sure of the condition of the patient, what sort of and whether proper treatment is given to the patient. Whatever, information is disseminated are as per set practice and procedure are quite mechanical as per default format, non-interactive and lacks human sensitivity to satisfy the natural anxiety of the near and dear ones. The people sitting at the designated help desks have customised stock answers to queries about the patient without any system to provide on-the-spot updates to the relatives by interacting with the attending treatment providers inside, if need be. Even, in case of death of the patient on-time authenticate message is not given to the near and dear ones.
Even, the dead body is not properly handled nor cremated in a dignified manner.
Besides the above public concern, it is my concern that recently, my husband Late Sri Sivram Sahu was admitted to the KIMS COVID Hospital on 3.5.2021 and ultimately expired on 28.5.2021. During the long duration of treatment in spite of his condition deteriorating and his shifting into ICU and then ventilator no authentic information was passed on to us. He, being a mass activist, concerned queries even from high level administrative and political authorities didn’t elicit any authentic information from the treating doctors. The passing of the message of his death to his brother and myself was most apathetic and insensitive. The message was received after almost twelve hours of his death from an unknown mobile number and the sender did not disclose his identity. That led to the unrest among his mass supporters and a sit-in demonstration was held by the shocked and agitated people at the hospital.
I am not sure if my husband was under constant and close treatment of any expert or senior doctors directly.
Under such atmosphere of insensitivity and transparency less, it is quite reasonable to suspect negligence in the treatment of my husband leading to deterioration in his condition resulting in death.
Therefore, I demand that:
- Proper inquiry may be conducted into the process of treatment of my husband in the hospital by a medical board headed by a professor of SCB Medical College.
- The Help Desk at each COVID hospital may be made more proactive, interactive, humane and sensible in answering the queries of the near and dear ones.
- Periodic updates of a patient may be posted through sms msg, whattsapp etc on the mobile contacts of the attendant.
- A system of appointing nodal officers for a particular area be introduced for acting as proper interaction and information channel between the patient and attendant. The nodal officers may also act as grievance redressal officers in case of any grievance either by the patient himself and the attendant against the process of treatment given.
- The instruction of Government regarding set up of dedicated helpdesk, which is yet to be carried out properly for 24 x 7, be strictly enforced by the Government.
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