Littering in CHK: Admin shifts blame to patients, visitors

Karachi: The administration of the Civil Hospital Karachi CHK is of the opinion that patients and their attendants and visitors are responsible for littering and unhygienic conditions of this biggest state-run provincial government healthcare facility of Sindh province.

One of the busiest hospitals of Pakistan, the CHK is visited by hundreds of thousands of people daily. However, its sanitary and cleanliness conditions are pathetically poor, with litter and garbage strewn in wards and corridors, offering a sorry look.

Additional Medical Superintendent General CHK Dr M Shakeel Aamir Mullick, when contacted, said despite issuing several warnings to attendants and visitors of patients about keeping cleanliness, unfortunately they do not bother to pay heeds. He said hospital administration could not be wholly blamed as it is also the responsibility of citizens not to strew litter.

The CHK is providing healthcare needs of millions of poor and low-income people belonging not only to Karachi, but also other parts of the country and a little effort to improve their cleanliness will not only bring good name of administration but also high the confidence of patients.

The majority of toilets and washrooms in OPD areas as well as wards are extremely dirty. There is no provision of soap for washing hands. The proper sanitation can save people from common infections. It is a must that patients, their attendants and hospital staff must wash their hands with soap after using toilets, as human excreta always contain large numbers of germs. The free roaming tea and juice sellers, hawkers and even beggars in the corridors and wards show the lack of proper security.

Dr Mullick said security issue needs to be addressed effectively. He complained that personnel of private contractor security company for allowing beggars and hawkers in hospital. He said the administration is not satisfied with the performance of security contractor and they will replace it soon.

He said the cleanliness situation could not be improved till proper help of visiting people is obtained. He hoped that flow of unnecessary people in the premises of hospital will be controlled through strict security.

Senior leader of Pakistan Medical Association PMA Dr S M Qaisar Sajjad said overall cleanliness situation in all government run hospitals is same, which is a matter of concern. He equally made responsible the general public along with government and hospitals administration about this prevailing situation.

He said administration of the hospitals needs to focus on effective infection control through improved cleanliness, especially in corridors and toilets. He said excessive use of antibiotics in our hospitals is directly related to higher rate of infection due to improper hygienic conditions.

He said cleanliness situation in some private hospitals is better as compare to government hospitals but situation in state runs healthcare centers is getting worse day by day. He said smoking cigarette, chewing betel leaf and other health hazardous substances strictly prohibited in hospitals but people openly using these substances in hospitals wards and there is no one who stop them to do so.

He said overall situation could not be improved until general public, government and hospitals administration will realize their basic responsibilities.