Fire in SCB Cardiology ward; patients safe

Cuttack: Panic gripped SCB Medical College and Hospital here after fire engulfed the duty room in the Cardiology ward this afternoon.

Reports said the incident took place at about 4 PM when people noticed smoke billowing out of the duty room on the second floor of the building.

The hospital staff immediately evacuated the 60 patients from the second floor with the help of the attendants and informed the authorities. Three fire brigade teams rushed to the hospital and doused the fire within an hour.

Asked about the cause of fire, the collector said it was due to a short circuit.

Emergency officer of the hospital Bhubanananda Maharana said there has been no damage to the ICUs of Cardio-thoracic and Cardiology department. “We have evacuated the patients from the Cardiology ward as the smoke entered the ward,” he informed.

Asked about the absence of fire safety measures in the hospital, he said the hospital superintendent is the right person to reply to this question. But he said the hospital authorities are trying to ensure that no such incident should occur in future.

Following information, Cuttack collector Nirmal Chandra Mishra, local MLA Pravat Biswal, Health and Family Welfare minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak and Health secretary Arati Ahuja visited the hospital to take stock of the situation.

Talking to media persons after visiting the affected ward of the hospital, the Health minister said the patients are safe. He said the collector had ordered a preliminary inquiry to ascertain the cause of the fire.

Replying to a question on why fire-fighting system was yet to be installed in the hospital, Nayak said; “We will look into this aspect.”

“But the first priority now is proper care of the patients. We will first ensure proper treatment to the patients who have been shifted from the Cardiology ward. We will have another round of meeting tomorrow to discuss the safety measures in the hospital in detail,” he added.