LARKANA: The Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) project of Chandka Medical College Hospital, Larkana, is ready to function after supply of Helium gas, but due to non-availability of running cost and trained staff, it will continue to linger causing hardships to the patients of more than 12 districts of upper Sindh.
The MRI/CT scan project has already been delayed for over eight long years as its administrative approval was granted on September 30, 2006 and the ECNEC approved the scheme in the same year and the funding of the project was on 50-50 cost sharing basis between the Sindh and Federal governments.
The total cost of the project was Rs:564 million excluding capital cost and it was to be completed during 2007-08. The project has been completed at two sites namely Civil Hospital, Karachi and Liaquat University Hospital Hyderabad/Jamshoro but the Chandka Medical College Hospital (CMCH) and People’s Medical College Hospital (PMCH) Nawabshah projects were forgotten by the Sindh Health Department which was reminded to them through media reports.
Sources told PPI that training of Radiology department doctors, appointment of trained staff as mentioned in the PC-1 is still lacking which will further delay this major diagnostic scheme as CT scan is being run by x-ray technicians. A heavy duty standby diesel generator of 550 KVA capacity has already been installed for this project alone which consumes 40 to 45 liters of diesel per hour and eight hours power outage is being carried out daily in Larkana at the moment which also require funds to procure POL so that MRI & CT scan may run in two shifts without any break to tackle the rush of patients & electricity is supplied uninterruptedly. According to doctors over 50 CT scans are being daily conducted and about half of this will require MRI test but the annual budget for procurement of X-Ray films to this 1400-bed hospital is very meagre which even cannot meet the actual present requirement of X-Ray machines.
Sources further said that at least Rs 25 million are annually required to run this project as its running cost to procure x-ray films and provide diesel to the generator along with proper training of doctors and appointment of trained staff otherwise tax payer’s money will be wasted.