Doctor halts surgery midway to film cockroach inside operation theatre, highlight sorry state of hospital

Doctor halts surgery midway to film cockroach inside operation theatre, highlight sorry state of hospital
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Hospital in Thane (inset: A screenshot of Dr Baranwal’s video courtesy Mumbai Mirror)

In yet another shocking incident highlighting the sorry state of civic hospitals in the city, a doctor apparently stopped a 45-year-old’s leg surgery midway after spotting a cockroach inside the operating theatre of one of the biggest super-specialty hospitals in Thane.

According to a Mumbai Mirror report, Senior orthopaedic surgeon Dr Sanjay Baranwal was performing the surgery at at Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Hospital last Friday when he spotted the insect.

Although hospitals are required to pay special attention to the operation theatre to ensure patients don’t get infected during surgery, the Kalwa-based hospital has done little to clean and disinfect the operation rooms.

Dr Baranwal had reportedly made several complaints about the pest problem in the hospital in the past, but to no avail. Another doctor had also spotted a cockroach in the room 15 days ago. He had it killed and removed before complaining the the authorities.

When Dr Baranwal saw the cockroach inside the OT on January 6, he halted the surgery midway to take a video of the incident in the hope that it could help draw the authorities’ attention to the poor state of the crucial facility.

He resumed the surgery after taking the video and completed it successfully.

The cleanliness and hygiene guidelines for hospitals mandate that every OT be washed and fumigated every week, something that the civic hospital’s authorities have refrained from doing.

Senior doctors believe that 25 percent of patients who underwent a procedure at the hospital in the last month have suffered from postoperative infections due to lack of disinfection and sterilisation of equipment.

Shockingly, even after Dr Baranwal sent the video recording of the incident, the hospital has not closed the OT for fumigation.

When contacted by the daily, the hospital’s dean, C Maitra, refused to comment on the presence of a cockroach in the surgery room and disconnected the calls.

Run by Thane Municipal Corporation, the 500-bed hospital has four new modular OTs, which were inaugurated by Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray in 2013. However, only one is functional due to shortage of staff.

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