Ctg city fails open heart surgery patients
Despite availability of all modern equipment in the port city, an overwhelming majority of patients from Chittagong region have to move to Dhaka for open heart surgery due to lack of a trained workforce here, causing waste of both their money and time.
Studies show that around 8,000 to 10,000 patients undergo the surgery annually in Bangladesh, including 2,000 to 2,500 from Chittagong region, said Dr Nazmul Hasan, head of the cardiac surgery department, Chittagong Medical College Hospital (CMCH).
But, every year only 100 to 150 of those patients undergo the surgery in the port city with the service being offered only in CMCH and a private hospital, he told The Daily Star.
“We have all modern equipment to perform open heart surgery at CMCH, but we don't have adequate human resources,” said Dr Nazmul, an assistant professor.
“We only have three trained surgeons, a trained cardiac anesthetist, an operation theatre (OT) nurse and an ICU nurse, while there is no perfusionist to operate the heart-lung machine during open heart surgery.”
The department immediately requires at least two or three junior surgeons, a cardiac anesthetist, a perfusionist, five to six ICU nurses and an OT nurse more, he added.
“With that workforce, we can do 300 to 400 operations a year.” He said now they could perform only three to four surgeries a month by bringing trained staff from Dhaka.
Dr Prabir Kumar Das, an assistant professor of the cardiology department at CMCH, said about 12 percent of the country's population suffered from heart related diseases, and the number of patients was growing hugely in Bangladesh.
“The ratio of coronary artery disease patients has been four times higher in developing countries like Bangladesh than in the US now when it was equal in 1968,” he said.
On the occasion of World Heart Day today, the cardiologist underscored public awareness at community level to cut the risks of heart related diseases.
Dr Prabir also talked of shortage of doctors and staff at his 60-bed cardiology ward, which is to accommodate 120 to 150 patients on an average. “We need a professor, three associate professors, and eight assistant professors more,” he told The Daily Star.