Irregularities at the Dhaka Medical Collage Hospital (DMCH), the country’s largest public hospital, are on the rise with the mounting pressure of patients on it, a study by the Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) said.
It says although some 7,280 patients visit the hospital on average every day seeking healthcare, they, in most cases, face hassles for lack of its capacity to handle the pressure. The DMCH has been upgraded to a 2,300-bed one, but its existing workforce can provide services only to 800 beds, the report says.
TIB researcher Taslima Akter revealed the findings of the study titled, ‘Dhaka Medical Collage Hospital (DMCH): Advancement of Good Governance, Challenges and Way Forward’ at a discussion on Monday morning.
TIB, the local chapter of the Berlin-based international graft watchdog, organized the discussion at Biam auditorium in the city.
About the challenges of DMCH manpower, the study shows that one doctor is working against 37 patients on average in it while a nurse takes care of 12 patients a day.
Besides, doctors in its outdoor units hardly join their works as per duty schedule (8 am) and leave the hospital well before ending of their stipulated duty (2:30 pm), the TIB report says.
It also reveals that when patients go to the DMCH seeking treatment, they are advised to go to selected private diagnostic centers for test, saying that the machine of test is not functional or the time of test is over. A section of hospital staff is involved in the process.
The report further says the patients do not get all the medicines at the DMCH as prescribed by its doctors, as a section of people, mostly its staff, sells the medicine to patients.
“Patients have to pay additional money to brokers or staff of the hospital to avail of services in hospital. Even one has to pay Tk 100-300 to get a bed in it,” the study finds.
Chaired by TIB executive director Dr Iftekharuzzman, the report launching programme was addressed, among others, by director general of the Health Directorate Khandaker M Sifayet Ullah, DMCH director Mustafizur Rahman and former pro-vice chancellor of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University Prof Rashid Mahmub and project director of DMCH Burn Unit Dr Samanta Lal Sen.