Tata Trust Govt Covid Hospital lacks patients, awaits governmental decision


Jayachandran Poinachi

With Covid-19 abating, the pandemic-dedicated 551-bed Tata Trust Govt Hospital has been rendered without patients, leaving the government to choose between converting it into a speciality hospital or for the specialised treatment of the long suffering endosulfan-afflicted

The deserted artistic corridor of the Tata Trust Govt Covid Hospital

Kasaragod: For the first time in eighteen months since the onset of the pandemic, the Tata Trust Govt Covid Hospital in Thekkil village, Poinachi, is without a single patient.

The last person undergoing treatment left the premises on Monday {April 11}. So, the next day the hospital functioned without a single patient. For the past three days not a single Covid-19 case has been reported in the district.

The 551-bed facility was handed over to the state government on September 10, 2020. Patients were treated and admitted in the first dedicated pandemic hospital in the country to be built from scratch at a cost of re. 60 crore, more than a month later on October 26. The hospital is without patients for the first time since then.

For the past many months Covid-19 patients in need of treatment were referred to the Tata Trust GCH. It is estimated that nearly 4,100 of the suffering have availed themselves of the available facilities. Once the incidence of the contagion abated, for quite some time now less than ten patients were seeking medical attention here. Last week it had further dwindled to low single digits – one or two.

Most of the staff numbering 191 have been reallocated to other health facilities in the district. Indications are that some medical equipment is also being transferred elsewhere. A 22-strong contingent including the superintendent oversee the working now. Ten are on leave. Of the original band of 39 doctors, including anaesthetists, paediatricians, pulmonologists, those in general medicine, an assistant surgeon, a casualty medical officer and a resident medical officer, only three are left.

Prefabricated containers in Tata Trust GCH, four of which provide daytime accommodation to the elderly, now

As the Covid-19 surge has subsided the future of the Tata Trust hospital is being called into question. There is no quick answer as to whether it should continue or be wound up. Recently, 17 elderly people have been provided daytime accommodation in four of the prefabricated containers. There is provision for food also.

The government is yet to take a decision if the Tata Trust GCH has to be converted into a speciality hospital. In such an eventuality, additional facilities, including multi-storey buildings will have to be constructed. Another suggestion is that it could be better utilised to provide specialised treatment to the endosulfan-afflicted. The public and the district are all ears for the tidings of a wise decision by the government.

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