What ails the AIIMS? Apathy, negligence and patients not receiving adequate treatment
"Only people with 'sources' get treated at AIIMS without any hassle, others - without any connection with the authorities, have to suffer an eternal wait to get their turn", claimed an exasperated patient at India's premier medical institute AIIMS.
OneIndia visited New Delhi's AIIMS and the reality on the ground was beyond shocking. As we entered the hospital premises, our attention was caught by the hundreds of patients waiting for treatment in the open - infested with rodents.
To our shock, we found out that many of the patients were suffering from life threatening diseases, such as cancer. We spoke to a patient who came all the way from West Bengal's Kolkata to get treated for cancer. She said, "I was forced to vacate my bed by the hospital authorities even before I was fit after a session of chemotherapy."
What she said was reiterated by another patient, who came from Bihar, he said that after being diagnosed with cancer, he has not received any treatment yet, and is waiting for his turn for his appointment over 7 months now.
Apart from life threating and critical diseases, we also spoke to people with critical injuries. Domi Mandal - a daily wage labourer from Bihar, was critically injured in the eye when hit by a stone at work. He said that after giving him some primary treatment, the doctors did not check his injury for 15 days. Domi said that he has lost sight in his right eye, and does not know when his turn for treatment will come.
Santosh Kumar from Bihar, who was also critically injured at work, said that he had been waiting in the open for more than a week, and is yet to get primary treatment. Patients are forced to bear the hardships of the climate just to get one appointment with doctors.
When the hospital security personnel were asked about the condition and why patients were made to wait in the open, they said, "They want fresh air, and hence are waiting in the open." This comment, however, was refuted by the exasperated patients.
One of them, who had come for the treatment of his daughter - a cancer patient, said that the doctors and the authorities are least concerned about the conditions of the patients. He said, "I have been running pillar to post for my daughter's treatment, but my efforts are futile, the doctors did not give me time, even after this long wait."
However, apart from being to wait in the open, after 5 pm, patients are not even allowed inside the premises, most of they have been living on the road and outside metro stations for weeks and months, in spite of the blazing sun and rains during monsoon.
Dr. AK Gadpaile of Ram Manohar Lohia Hospitals in Delhi also commented on the issue, he said that AIIMS is allowed to deny treatment to patients - even with critical condition. And they do that as they have the permission.
AIIMS Delhi, was ranked first among medical colleges in India in 2017, and Union Health Minister JP Nadda is the Chairman G.B of the Institute.