J&K floods: Army hospital saving lives as health infrastructure crumbles

At a time when almost the entire healthcare infrastructure in Srinagar city has been rendered ineffective by the devastating floods, the Army's 92 Base Hospital here has saved the lives of more than 300 people including 35 newborns.

PTI| Updated: Sep 20, 2014, 11:43 AM IST

Srinagar: At a time when almost the entire healthcare infrastructure in Srinagar city has been rendered ineffective by the devastating floods, the Army's 92 Base Hospital here has saved the lives of more than 300 people including 35 newborns.

The army doctors without caring about their own houses and families affected by the floods have been working day and night at the 600-bed facility, the biggest army hospital in the entire Kashmir Valley.

The family of Riyaz Ahmed, whose three-month-old daughter was suffering from encephalitis, was preparing to face the worst as the doctors at the district hospital in Anantnag gave up hope of saving the infant.

"Doctors in Anantnag told us that they won't be able to save our daughter and that we should take her home and be prepared for the worst, " Riyaz who is a driver by profession told PTI.

However, after flood waters entered his village, an army helicopter rescued the family. "They brought us at the army hospital here and since then the treatment of my daughter is on," Riyaz said.

The doctors treating the infant say that she has fully recovered and was now out of danger.

"She was brought here in a critical condition but the baby girl is fine now and we will discharge her in a day or two," said Brigadier NS Lamba, the commander of the 92 Base Hospital located at the Badami Bagh cantonment area.

Riyaz said that the army doctors have performed a miracle by saving the life of his daughter. "Even if I have to give my life for them a thousand times, I will happily do that.
"These men here have given a new lease of life to my entire family," Riyaz said.

Brigadier Lamba said that as soon as the water started entering the GB Panth children hospital in the Srinagar city, the army hospital opened its doors for the infants who were undergoing treatment at the hospital and had to be rescued.

"The babies coming to our hospital from the GB Panth hospital were in the age group of one day old to a few months old.

"They were undergoing treatment for various diseases. Some of these babies were brought in critical condition as some were cases of pre-mature deliveries and had to be kept in ICU," he said.

Despite the floods, he said, the army doctors have been regularly reporting on duty to save the lives of the patients who were brought to the hospital.
"The houses of 17 of my officers including doctors and paramedics are still under water, but they are regularly coming to save the lives of the patients who were brought to this hospital," Brig Lamba said.

Ghulam Rasool (70), a resident of Nowgam whose 27-day- old grandson is undergoing treatment at the ICU of the base hospital, said that he was indebted to the army for their timely help.

"They haven't charged us a single penny and besides providing free treatment, medicines to the sick baby they are also taking caring of our family by giving us food and shelter here," Rasool said.