Water crisis at hospitals

Namrata Devikar
Friday, 17 May 2019

Water cuts affecting staff and patients at small, big city hospitals alike

PUNE: With the water crisis hitting the city, big and small hospitals are also grappling with the problem of water shortage. Doctors from small hospitals have noted that as the summer holiday season is going on, planned surgeries have been avoided on days there is no water supply. Big hospitals, meanwhile, have to depend on water tankers on all days. Some of the hospitals, which have rainwater harvesting and sewage treatment plants, reuse water for gardening and washing ambulances, etc.

SMALL HOSPITALS FACING ISSUES
Speaking to Sakal Times, Dr Nitin Bhagali from Bhagali Clinic and Nursing Home, a 16-bed private medical facility in the city, said that as theirs is a small hospital, there are a lot of problems faced by the patients and staff at the hospital.

“There are a lot of family members who stay at the hospital. As there is already a water crisis, with increased members, it is a huge task to manage the usage of water. As the holiday season is also going on, many people have planned surgeries during this period. However, because of the shortage of water, we are avoiding scheduling surgeries on Wednesdays and Thursdays, as we need to save water on these days since there are no water cuts,” said Bhagali.

He also added that to cope up with the water shortage, they need at least one tanker on Wednesday evenings.

“As there is no water supply on Thursdays, we need to get a tanker on Wednesday evenings. This is again costly for the hospital,” added Bhagali.

He further added that there were no water woes when polling was going on. “As soon as the polling got over, we started facing water cuts and water shortage. There were no such problems when the election was going on,” Bhagali added.

BIG HOSPITALS TROUBLED
The water crisis is also hitting bigger hospitals in the city. Speaking to Sakal Times, Ruby Hall Clinic General Manager Ravindra Naik said that they need at least 15 to 20 tankers each day to sustain during this water crisis.

“As a big facility, we require more water and need about 20 tankers each day. The water supply by the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) is erratic and hence we need tankers. On days when there is no water supply, we need more water. We have advised the staff and patients to use water judiciously,” said Naik.

However, some hospitals are able to cope with the water crisis with the help of rainwater harvesting and Sewage Treatment Plants (STP).  Speaking to Sakal Times, CEO of HV Desai Eye Hospital Dr Rajesh Kapse said that despite the water shortage, with the help of rainwater harvesting and STP, they are able to sustain without needing water tankers.

“We use the recycled water from STP for watering the plants and washing ambulances. The water supply from the PMC is sufficient at this stage for us,” said Kapse.

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