Mangaluru, May 09, 2017: Reports inform that the Wenlock District Government Hospital in Mangaluru, which caters to the sick not only from Dakshina Kannada but also the neighbouring districts, and even Kasargod is facing shortage of beds in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
The 1,000-bed capacity hospital has a 12-bed level-1 ICU (capable of providing multi-system life support) and a seven-bed level-2 ICU (normal ICU). The ICU is used not only by in-patients but also patients admitted to the Government Lady Goschen Hospital in Mangaluru. As a result, the ICU beds are always occupied.
The rush is forcing poor patients to turn to private hospitals. On any given day, at least 10-12 patients admitted to Wenlock Hospital wait to be shifted to the ICU. Recently, 32 people injured in a road accident at Kalasa in Chikkamagaluru district were shifted to Wenlock Hospital. Five of them had to be admitted to the ICU, but just three beds were available. Two patients had to be shifted to the ICU of the KMC -Kasturba Medical College Hospital, Wenlock Hospital Superintendent Dr Rajeshwari Devi said.
Set up in 1848, the Wenlock Hospital was taken over by the Madras government in 1891. The hospital is a boon for patients from coastal Karnataka, Malnad and Bayalu Seeme regions. Even patients from far-off Davangere, Gadag and Haveri districts come here for treatment. “Some district hospitals do not have ICU and other modern facilities. Hence, patients from such districts are referred to Wenlock Hospital. There has been an increase in patient enrolments from Davangere, Gadag and Haveri,” Dr Rajeshwari Devi said.
On average, 25,000-30,000 in-patients are treated at Wenlock Hospital every year, including 1,500 patients who are admitted to the ICU. “Pregnant women from Goschen Hospital who undergo complications during childbirth are referred to the ICU at Wenlock Hospital. We cannot deny them the ICU facility. The ICU has to take in patients from the two hospitals,” she said.
The new building of Goschen Hospital will have a state-of-the art ICU. In addition, the work on a second block for Wenlock Hospital will start shortly, which will have a 20-bed level-1 ICU besides a level- 2 ICU. Once these works are complete, the shortage of beds in the ICU will be addressed, she said.
KMC to get facility for next 33 years :
Continuing the six-decade long relationship with the Government Wenlock Hospital, the Manipal University has agreed to build a new super-speciality block for the hospital and manage it. In turn, the State government has permitted students of Kastruba Medical College (KMC), under the university, to continue to use the clinical facilities at the Wenlock and Government Lady Goschen Hospitals for the next 33 years.
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) to this effect was signed between the university and the Department of Health and Family Welfare on April 12.
The undergraduate and postgraduate students of KMC have been using clinical facilities at the 705-bed Wenlock Hospital and 350-bed maternity Lady Goschen Hospital since 1955. The university is also providing services of specialists, paramedical staff, housekeeping staff, and security personnel for the two hospitals.
With the need to cater to increasing number of patients from the district and other parts of the State to Wenlock Hospital, the State government proposed the university to build a new building on the Wenlock Hospital premises.
As per the MoU, the university will develop Wenlock Hospital in three phases. In the first phase it will construct the four-storeyed super speciality block in about 1 lakh sqft area. In the second phase, it will renovate wards and retain old part of the hospital as heritage block. In the third phase, the university will renovate the out patient department.
As per the MoU, the clinical fee to be paid to the government will be 50% of the prevailing fee prescribed by the State government. No other institute will be permitted to make use clinical services at the two government hospitals.
The government has set up an executive committee headed by the Deputy Commissioner or Chief Executive Officer of the zilla panchayat and comprising Joint Director of Directorate of Health and Family Welfare Services, District Health Officer, District Surgeon, and four representatives of Manipal University to monitor the work of the new project.