Times of India
26 July 2010
Apart from attending to patients, doctors will devote additional time to spruce up the hospital premises
KEM Hospital doctors who will take the brooms into their own hands on Monday to clean up their messy environs have an uphill task ahead of them. Mumbai Mirror’s survey of the premises revealed that even though the there are 400 sweepers and a budget running into several crores for keeping civic hospital clean, the corridors of KEM are worse than the dirtiest railway station in the city.
Mumbai Mirror had reported on Sunday that the doctors, worried about the health of their patients and fed up of the filth, are planning to clean the place up themselves.
Paan-stains and trash litter not just the common areas like corridors and elevators but even sensitive sections like the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) and the cardiac surgery department.
Corners have piles of discarded tobacco sachets, cigarette packets, water bottles and plastic and paper cups even though the hospital has dustbins on each floor and in front of each department. The piles of garbage have turned into mosquito breeding sites. Paper used by visitors to sit or eat on is all over the floor.
Mirror also caught people spitting and washing their hands on the premises. We caught Ramesh Shinde, a relative of a patient, leaning over the wall of the second floor so he could spit. When told that it was against the rules and he could be fined for it, he apologised and made a few excuses.
Another visitor washed his hands after his lunch on the corridor of the first floor. A middle-aged man was caught spitting right outside the MICU. When caught, he refused to be identified and said, "My relative is in the MICU. I am tense and hence did not realise what I was doing."
About 300-odd doctors will mop up this mess on the premises on Monday. Dr Nitin Dange, neuro surgeon, said the doctors would have to work over time. "We don’t have a choice. I will attend to patients between 9 am and 4 pm and then spend as much time as required to clean my department and wards after that." The doctors will not only sweep and mop the floors but also stop people from littering. About 500 resident doctors may also join the operation.
With this drive, the doctors hope to motivate visitors to be better-mannered and the cleaning staff to be more conscientious. Dange said the sweepers and cleaners were often absent and when present they did only one round of cleaning, which was not enough.
Representing the Class IV workers of the hospital, President of Karmachari Kamgar Sena Sunil Chitnis said, "We can’t clean more than this. There is a shortage of staff. Also, we are unable to cope with the workload because the hospital has too many patients. Almost 10,000 visitors come here every day. They sit around all day and eat and sleep here."