Patients suffer as PIC’s angiography machine goes dysfunctional

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LAHORE: Negligence of the Specialised Healthcare & Medical Education (SH&ME) department has put the lives of hundreds of cardiac patients at risk as the angiography machine installed in the emergency ward of the Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC) lies dysfunctional for the past several days, Pakistan Today has learnt.

The equipment was installed in the emergency cardiac ward for urgent angioplasty of patients besides conducting their angiography tests.

Sources in the PIC informed that the machine was installed around a year and a half ago in the newly constructed 200-bed emergency block. “Friends of PIC (FoP) donated a hefty amount worth Rs5.5 million for the construction of this modern ward. In addition, the FoP also donated this state-of-the-art angiography machine that costs around Rs1.2 million,” they said.

They further told that due to the negligence of the authorities concerned, the machine had been dysfunctional for weeks now and the management, since after, had shifted the machine to a locked room.

“It is a state-of-the-art and extremely useful piece of medical equipment, and a large number of patients have been left distressed ever since it has broken down,” sources said and added that the PIC was treating a large number of patients on a daily basis while hundreds of patients visited its emergency block every day. “But instead of keeping the equipment running to facilitate the patients, the administration’s ignorance is adding to the concerns of the already upset patients.”

Sources also said that the administration appeared to be reluctant to facilitate the patients according to the machine’s capacity even when it was up and running.

A senior surgeon at the PIC told Pakistan Today that since the machine was donated, the hospital administration remained reluctant in taking over its control.

“Due to the reluctance in taking over the machine’s control, the hospital administration also failed to reward the service contract for the machine’s maintenance,” he said and added that lack of service contract was the major cause of the machine going out of order. He further told that the fault that had occurred in this machine was a minor one and it could be fixed at a cost of just Rs50,000.

It is pertinent to mention here that PIC is the only hospital in Punjab, which can facilitate the patients with urgent primary angioplasty.

PIC Chief Executive Officer Nadeem Hayyat Malik and Medical Superintendent Dr Dildar Khan were reached out for a comment, but both the officials were not available.