Emergency medical equipment left unboxed for years: HC asks health ministry for probe
The High Court today ordered the health ministry to conduct an inquiry into allegations of keeping 28 emergency medical equipment for detecting diseases in boxes at 16 hospitals in the country over the years and to submit a report to the court in 60 days.
The court also issued a rule asking the authorities concerned of the 16 hospitals and the government to explain in four weeks why their negligence should not be declared illegal.
The HC bench of Justice M Enayetur Rahim and Justice Md Mostafizur Rahman came up with the order and rule following a writ petition filed by Supreme Court lawyer Manoj Kumar Bhowmik seeking necessary directives.
The lawyer submitted the petition as a public interest litigation to the HC recently, based on a report published by Bangla daily Prothom Alo on August 24 this year.
In the report, the Bangla daily said that 28 emergency machines remain unopened in boxes at 16 hospitals, some remaining in crates for last 17 years.
The equipment include X-ray machines, ultrasonogram (USG) and ECG machines and ventilators. Some of those have already become dysfunctional as they remained idle for long while some are on the verge of ruin, the report said.
The authorities of most of the hospitals said lack of manpower was the main reason of keeping the machines still packed, while in some cases the machines could not be installed because of lack of technical assistance from the health department.