Bed shortage crisis at Gulab Devi Hospital adds to patients’ ordeal


LAHORE: The Gulab Devi Hospital, that once had a total capacity of accommodating 1500 beds, has now been limited by the management to 650 beds in a bid to establish the medical college of the hospital. Adding to the ordeal of the already distressed patients, the doctors due to the shortage of beds have started referring them to other hospitals while labelling their respiratory problems as cardiac.

With the cases of tuberculosis (TB) at rise across the country, the Gulab Devi Chest Hospital, which by the way is the largest of the metropolis, receives hundreds of patients suffering from the disease every day. But while the hospital’s floor is flooding with patients, there is not enough room to accommodate them in the infirmary that not only receives an annual fund worth millions, but also hundreds of thousands of rupees as donations by the affluent.

While the poor facilities being offered at the hospital reflect the government’s negligence towards the health sector, TB patients coming in from not only Lahore but also from the nearby districts, have to suffer a lot.

According to sources, a majority of the patients are referred to other hospitals while being told that they are suffering from cardiac diseases and not breathing problems. Not just this, but the system moulded to provide the needy with free medication has also been disrupted and the people have been left distraught because of the shortage of ultrasound and other medical testing equipment, they added.

The authorities need to take an immediate action and look into the hospital’s matters, said the sources while adding that the people need to be provided with their right to proper healthcare facilities. They also said that the government should take a strict action against the doctors who are not performing their duties properly.

Speaking to Pakistan Today, Gulab Devi Hospital Medical Superintendent (MS) Dr Hamid said that the medical college at the hospital was established after completing all the legal procedures.

“I do not only know the problems that are faced by the patients, but also put in all my efforts to address them for better facilitation. It is due to the large number of patients coming in from across the province that we face a lot of difficulties and at times the patients are left unsatisfied,” he said.