Pradeep Pattanayak

With flood leaving diseases in its wake, more and more patients from flood-hit areas of Puri, Cuttack, Khordha and Nayagarh are arriving at the Capital Hospital in Bhubaneswar, resulting in the available infrastructure falling drastically short. 

These days, it is common to come across scenes of patients receiving treatment on the verandah of the hospital and their relatives standing in queues for hours to receive services. 

The burden on Capital Hospital has seen a sudden increase as it is receiving patients from Puri, Cuttack, Khordha and Nayagarh districts because it has been the referral hospital of these four districts. Besides this, capital dwellers too depend on this hospital. 

Since the infrastructure at the hospital not being sufficient enough to cater to such a huge rise in the number of patients, the patients are being treated at the hospital verandah. 

“It is 9.30 am now and I have been standing in the queue since 8 am. I don’t know how long I have to wait for my turn,” rued a patient who came from Kanas. 

When contacted, Director of Capital Hospital Dr Laxmidhar Sahu said, “There has been an increase in the number of patients since last two days. Most of the patients are complaining of fever and headache. Since they have outnumbered the seats available, they are being treated on the verandah.”

Even today, thousands of families in Kanas block of Puri district are still marooned. Even if many of them are in the need of treatment, they are left with no option but to wait for the water to recede. There are ASHA workers who have medicine, but it is impossible on their part to visit door to door. 

The pictures emerging from Banki area in Cuttack district are rather disturbing. After flood, people including children and elderly ones are complaining of skin diseases. 

“My son is suffering from fever. I am taking her to Kanas hospital. He became sick after living in a waterlogged state for four to five days,” said a female resident of Kanas area. 

Echoing the same plight, a female resident of Banki area said her son has developed itchy rashes after having been forced to bath in floodwater.