Hospitals fall victim to severe shortage of medicines

Hospitals fall victim to severe shortage of medicines

Hospitals fall victim to severe shortage of medicines

Written by Amani Nilar

12 Aug, 2022 | 7:24 pm

COLOMBO (News 1st); A serious shortage of medicine is being reported from the Anuradhapura Teaching Hospital. 

Patients say that most of the medicine prescribed by doctors who come to the clinics are not being dispensed by the hospital. 

The patients stated that although they were told to purchase the medicine, either the hospital pharmacies are facing severe shortages, or the that they do not have the means to puchase them.

Generally, Government hospitals are visited by low-income families who cannot make extravagant purchases, and much less medicine.

Many who could not purchase  medicines even from private pharmacies were witnessed due to the shortage of medicines in the country.

Doctors point out that the Anuradhapura Teaching Hospital does not have even the significant life-saving medicines. 

Dr. Shashika Withanage, the Medical Officer on Duty at the Anuradhapura Teaching Hospital Emergency Unit, stated that people's lives have come under serious threat, as their safety of life has been seriously threatened through the shortage in medicines.

"If I get a heart attack right now, the hospital does not have the drops needed to maintain the necessary blood pressure," he said.

Against this backdrop, the Anuradhapura Teaching Hospital is also facing challenges in performing surgeries. 

Dr. Ajantha Rajakaruna, the Assistant Secretary of the Government Medical Officers Association points out that there is a huge shortage of medicines in intensive care units, in addition to a shortage in life-saving medicines. 

"Even if the planned surgeries are carried out , it becomes impossible to perform emergency surgeries. We have a problem in getting the medicines that are received in small quantities from the central medicine storage. Currently, there is no system of getting fuel for our medicine transport trucks. It is easier to give the list of drugs that are available than to give the list of drugs that are not available. That's how bad this shortage is," Dr. Rajakaruna said.

The Director of the Anuradhapura Teaching Hospital, Dr. Dulan Samaraweera echoes a similar sentiment, pointing out that there is an overall shortage of medicines affecting the entire island, which had also affected the hospital.

Meanwhile, most patients who came to the Colombo National Hospital said that they had to purchase most of the medicines prescribed by the hospital from private pharmacies.

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