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SHOCKING: In 7 years, 13,840 TB patients have died at Mumbai's Sewri hospital

The 1,000-bed civic-run hospital admits anywhere between 40-70 patients, and witnesses the death of at least one-tenth of their patients every day

More than 1,300 male patients suffering from tuberculosis succumb to the disease every year in Sewri TB Hospital. According to the doctors, there are many reasons for the high mortality rate of patients in the hospital.

Most of them are in the last stage of the disease, and are abandoned by their relatives when there is no scope of their survival. “Despite prescribing drugs to them, they don’t respond to the treatment and surgery at that stage is also no longer an options,” said a senior doctor from the hospital. When mid-day checked the figures between 2007 and February 2014, it was found that more than half of the patients were male.

For instance, in 2010 out of 2,004 patients who succumbed to TB and drug-resistant viruses, a whopping 1,467 patients were male. A senior doctor, on the condition of anonymity, said that it was unclear why the number of male patients was more than female. In all probability, relatives might at least attempt to get male patients treatment and admit them to the hospital, before women, he added.

Not just patients
Another disturbing fact gathered from the reports was that between December 2013 to March 2014, 46 out of 328 employees have tested positive for TB. The doctor said, “In 2011, 801 employees were screened and only 11 tested positive.

However, every year fewer employees are taking part in the screening camps that are conducted every three months. Most prefer undergoing treatment in private hospitals due to the stigma attached with TB.”

In 2013, between May and August, 490 employees were screened, and 34 employees tested positive for TB. Between August and December, 344 employees were screened and 39 tested positive.

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