After complaints from patients that Sassoon Hospital is apathetic towards terminally ill individuals admitted here and thatpeople from the lower socio-economic strata are treated pitifully by the staff, MiD DAY conducted a reality check.
Some patients had complained that economically backward people coming in for treatment were being made to sleep on a board on the floor and that HIV+patients are left in a corner as far away from the other patients as possible. The orthopaedic ward, which is also equipped to treat babies is used as a storage space for broken beds and other damaged furniture. When questioned, however, the hospital authorities said that no such thing was happening. “Relatives of patients who cannot afford the cost of treatment simply leave their sick here and vanish.
Those patients are treated in Sassoon General Hospital, but they are ill-treated. The hospital staff doesn’t give them beds to sleep on and forces them to sleep on the floor,” said a social worker on condition of anonymity. visit to orthopaedic ward number two revealed that in spite of a few cots lying vacant, some patients were asleep on mattresses placed on the floor near the wall of the bathroom.
A nurse, requesting anonymity, claimed that patients who arae HIV+ are kept away from others on mattress on the floor against the bathroom wall. A ward boy said on condition of anonymity, “In ward number 2, the HIV patients are kept in isolation and hospital staff show apathy towards such people. Sometimes, the staff even place the patients’ medicines out of reach, because they want to stay as far away from them as possible.”
Regarding the broken furniture in the orthopaedic ward, a staff member said, “Sometimes, bed sheets and other discarded material is kept there. If there is no man to throw out these things, it piles up near bathrooms and causes inconvenience to patients.”