24 April 2010
By Raakhi Jagga
Doctors from Ferozepur City, Abohar, Gurharsahai, Jalalabad, Fazilka and Balluana hospitals have sent written representations to Ferozepur Civil Surgeon Dr Dilip Kumar, asking him to get the samples of povidoneiodine – a medicine used as antiseptic for sterilisation of body before surgery – sent for laboratory tests. According to these doctors, the medicine supplied to them is causing irritation in their eyes and can damage patients’ skin.
The medicine is manufactured by Endolabs Limited based in Pigdamber (MP).
Surgeons say the irritation from the medicine is so high that their eyes become watery and they find it difficult to carry out a surgery.
The medicine has been purchased in bulk and supplied to the hospitals only about two to three months before expiry, it is learnt.
The stock received about two months ago is set to expire in June.
According to the complainant doctors, most hospitals have the supply in bulk against the usage of only 15 litres in a month.
They claim to have been complaining about the inferior quality povidone-iodine for the last two months, but the stock has not been replaced yet. Most doctors are now asking the patients to purchase the medicine from outside to avoid any risk.
Fazilka Senior Medical Officer Dr Y K Gupta confirmed that complaints are pouring in about the medicine, adding that the Ferozepur headquarters of the Health department had also sent a written representation about it.
Civil Surgeon, Ferozepur, Dr Dilip Kumar, however, tried to evade all queries on this. Though he admitted that he was aware of the problem, he said: “This is not my subject. Health system corporation officials should be contacted for this.” Health Secretary Satish Chander, who is also the Managing Director of Punjab Health System Corporation, however, expressed ignorance about the complaints. He said: “I will get the matter inquired. If there is a problem, it needs to be sorted out soon. But no one has told me anything about it.”