Routine Surgeries Being Impacted Even as COVID-19 Cases Subside

Routine Surgeries Being Impacted Even as COVID-19 Cases Subside

Many citizens of Mumbai are still unable to get their non-COVID-related ailments treated as several hospitals are not carrying out routine surgeries since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. This comes as Mumbai is currently seeing 400 to 500 new coronavirus cases per day. 

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Further, operation theatres in many hospitals are either functioning as COVID treatment facilities or undergoing repairs, leading to a lot of inconvenience for patients seeking surgeries or other ailments attended to. 

For example, orthopaedic procedures at the Gokuldas Tejpal Hospital have reportedly seen a drop from 80 a month to just 30 per month as per officials. A doctor from the hospital was quoted by The Indian Express saying that the institution barely has any COVID-19 patients. 

“For surgery, we need anaesthetists, they have been deputed on Covid-19 duty. Many surgeries have to be postponed because of lack of anaesthetists,” the doctor went on to say. 

In another incident, 24-year-old Sufiyan Usmani met with an accident on Jan 24 near Mumbra, injuring his leg in the process. His brother Mohamed Usmani took him to Nair Hospital for treatment after realizing that the treatment in Mumbra was beyond their means. 

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“We reached Nair hospital at 4 pm. At 5.45 pm, a doctor saw my brother and said he needs emergency surgery but their OT is not functioning. He asked us to go to JJ hospital,” he said. While Mohamed managed to admit his brother into Nair Hospital, Sufiyan is yet to undergo an operation.  

Separately, one of the two operation theatres in Rajawadi hospital has been closed since last year. This means the hospital can only perform five to six operations per day down from 10 to 12 operations prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, the second operation theatre which is assigned for orthopaedic treatment is reportedly undergoing repairs.

Multiple hospitals that are run by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) are yet to reopen their operation theatres. However, BMC’s Additional Municipal Commissioner, Suresh Kakani has said that he will conduct a review of the number of surgeries performed in civic hospitals. 

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