Suhrawardy Hospital resumes operation

It is a ‘wake-up call’: Health Minister

Staff Correspondent

16 February, 2019 12:00 AM printer

Suhrawardy Hospital
resumes operation

A patient is being taken off a hospital stretcher and put onto a bed of Shaheed Suhrawardy Medical College Hospital as he was transferred to another hospital after a fire broke out in the Suhrawardy Hospital on Thursday night. —SUN photo

Shaheed Suhrawardy Medical College Hospital (SSMCH) has resumed its activities on Friday after a fire broken out at the hospital on Thursday night.

“Already all departments of our hospital except children ward are carrying out activities. We will resume children ward after completely cleaning it,” SSMCH Director Prof Uttom Kumar Barua told the daily sun around 7:00 pm on Friday.

He said already 803 patients of the hospital returned to the hospital while a total of 1174 patients were admitted at different wards of the hospital on Thursday during the fire.

The SSMCH director further said the health ministry has formed a seven member investigation committee headed by one additional secretary and the hospital also formed another separate nine-member investigation committee to probe the incident.

The hospital sources said some 526 male, 576 female and 72 child patients—were shifted to different other government hospitals on Thursday night after the fire originated at the children’s ward on the second floor of the new building of the hospital and spread to the store room on the ground floor.

Four wards, out of total 13 wards and a burn unit, bore the brunt in the fire which will remain closed for investigation, the hospital sources added.

Sources of the hospital some attendants said around 180 patients went to Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) from the Suhrawardy hospital during the fire.

“The emergency section of the hospital was reopened on Thursday night and some others went on operation today (Friday),” Uttom Kumar Barua said.        

Visiting the hospital, the daily sun correspondent saw at noon that many important files contain history of the patients got burnt or lost due to the fire incident while the attendants of the patients were seen rushing to the hospital seeking their files since Friday morning.

Md Abdul Hannan, a senior staff nurse of the hospital, said some of the patients went to their houses and many others went to Dhaka Medical College Hospital who returned to the hospital since Friday morning.

The hospital was not receiving child patients as the children’s ward was severely affected, sources said.

Mostafa Kamal Rouf, residential doctor of the hospital said since Friday morning they were receiving old patients went outside during the fire and some new patients also.

Addressing a press conference at his Baridhara residence on Friday morning, Health and Family Welfare Minister Zahid Maleque said that the government will modernise the fire safety measures at all the hospitals in the country through testing electric equipments.

“The fire in the hospital is a lesson for us. It is a wake up call. Many of our hospitals have become old. The fire fighting system now needs to be much more modernised. All the electric equipments and ware in the hospitals will be checked”, he said.

The Health and the Home Ministry formed two separate committees to investigate whether a short-circuit caused the fire or something else, he added.

The fire broke out on the second floor around 6:00pm on Thursday but what caused the fire could not be confirmed yet.

Sixteen firefighting units were able to douse the fire around 9:00pm, Saleh Uddin, Deputy Assistant Director of the fire service, said adding that they were able to completely control the fire at around 11:00pm on Thursday.

Speaking at another programme, arranged by Quantum Foundation Blood Donation programme at the National Press Club in the afternoon Health Minister Zahid Maleque said people from all walks of life worked to douse the flame and saved the patients at the Suhrawardy Hospital.

“No people died in the fire incident,” he said.