ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Rayon Cold War

inadequate for the functions they are expected to perform. In one local hospital, employing about 15 permanent doctors and 300 stipendiaries (100 Interns and 200 Housemen/Registrars), the number of in-patients is never less than 1,500 against a nominal bed capacity of 1,000 and the out-patients who flock daily to its door rarely number kss than 2,000. In the Out-Patients Department, some 50 odd doctors have to examine and prescribe for the 2,000 visitors in the course of something like four hours 1 It is not surprising, then, that the striking doctors' demands include not just improved stipends and living conditions for themselves, but, equally important, improved working conditions in the hospitals themselves, Hospital management, too, is far more antiquated than is generally realised. Communication systems, including those that summon a Houseman to an "emergency'', for example, still rely on the trusted old mail-runner in the guise of a ward-boy. Many, one cannot resist the temptation to add "life-saving*', minutes are often lost by the time a doctor is located and brought to his patient. An under-equipped, over-worked central laboratory service results in the conversion of out-patients, whose cases call for this service, into in-patients occupying badly-needed beds until the appropriate analytical test can be done.

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