Patients suffering from chest diseases are being deprived of proper treatment at Kurigram Chest Disease Clinic as there is no doctor for chest disease for nearly three years.
Sources at the hospital said there are two posts of physicians in the clinic--one junior consultant (chest disease) and one medical officer (MO).
The post of junior consultant is lying vacant for nearly three years.
Meanwhile, the post of MO, which was lying vacant for nearly two years, has been recently filled with the joining of Dr Rafiqul Islam Sardar on February 27.
Besides, there are no radiologist and pharmacist in the clinic for three years, even though there is an X-ray machine functional.
“Some patients from adjoining Lalmonirhat come here for Tuberculosis (TB) test as there is no machine for detection of TB in Lalmonirhat, said Ashok Kumar, laboratory attendant of the clinic.
“Now seven or eight patients come here on an average every day,” Office Assistant Shajeda Khatun said, adding that over 20 patients used to visit the clinic when a junior consultant was posted there.
“We advise chest disease patients to go to Kurigram General Hospital, if anyone comes here for treatment,” Shajeda said.
"We only prepare laboratory tests and provide medicines for the patients," she said.
Nargis Begum, 25, wife of Rafiqul Islam of Harikesh village in Kurigram Sadar, said, “I have been taking treatment under Gynaecologist Dr Mahabuba Khatun at Kurigram General Hospital as there is no doctor at Kurigram Chest Disease Clinic.”
Kurigram Civil Surgeon Dr Aminul Islam said, “The posts of junior consultant and medical officer at Kurigram Chest Disease Clinic have remained vacant for long, although a number of poor patients from nine upazilas of the district come here for treatment.”
“I have informed the higher authorities about the matter and requested them to send at least one doctor [chest disease], but to no result yet,” the civil surgeon said.
“In absence of a specialist doctor, I give treatment to some male patients while Dr Mahabuba provides treatment to female patients,” he said, adding that the authorities concerned should fill the vacant posts soon, considering the interest of the poor patients.