District Hospital in Taplejung overwhelmed with patientsThe 15-bed hospital has been receiving more than 100 patients on a daily basis, hospital records show.
On Monday, Kamal Prasad Bhattarai of Phungling Municipality-7 took his son to the District Hospital in Taplejung. He had been coughing persistently. Doctors tested him for Covid-19 and the result came back positive.
He had to be put on oxygen support as his blood oxygen level was below normal. But there were no beds available at the Emergency Unit of the hospital.
“They arranged for a mattress on the floor for my son, as there were no beds available,” said Bhattarai.
Khadga Bahadur Gurung, a resident of Mikwakhola Ward No. 4, was also at the hospital on Monday. His relative was sick and had to be admitted to the hospital immediately.
“My relative was suffering from diarrhoea and vomiting. He needed to be admitted to the hospital but there were no beds available,” said Gurung. “He sat on a bench while the doctors treated him.”
The District Hospital has been seeing an increase in the number of patients needing hospitalisation in the last week. Dr Sonim Lama, chief at the hospital, said the 15-bed hospital is already filled to its capacity and may not be able to take in more patients in the coming days.
“The hospital is not in a situation to admit more patients now. Most of the wards in the hospital are occupied with patients of Covid-19 and other illnesses,” Lama told the Post.
Currently, over 40 patients are undergoing treatment at the hospital.
“We didn't expect to see such a huge surge of patients. We are planning to shift some patients to the isolation facility of the municipality and vacate some beds at the hospital,” said Lama. “The hospital has added 30 beds in the emergency and the Covid-19 wards as a temporary solution.”
Sabin Baniya, a patient admitted at the hospital, has been sharing a bed with another patient due to the shortage of hospital beds.
“We have been compelled to share beds. One bed has two patients,” he said.
According to the hospital record, for the past week, the hospital has been receiving more than 100 patients on a daily basis.
“We are seeing a large number of patients suffering from diarrhoea, pneumonia, common cold and other diseases,” said Lama. “Some require hospitalisation.”
According to Gyatri Adhikari, assistant chief district officer of Taplejung, coronavirus cases have been increasing in Phungling, Pathibhara Yangwarak and Sidingwa areas in the past week. “We have requested every one to strictly follow health safety protocols,” he said.
Currently, there are around 400 active Covid-19 in Taplejung, said Hemraj Kathayat, the Covid-19 focal person at the District Health Office.