New Delhi, The NHRC on Tuesday said it has issued a notice to the Jharkhand government over reports of alleged negligence in care of two “mentally ill patients” who were lying unattended on the floor of a government-run hospital in Dhanbad. In a statement, the National Human Rights Commission has observed that the content of the media report, if true, raises a serious issue of violation of the right to life and dignity of the patients.

The NHRC has taken “suo motu cognisance of a media report that two unknown mentally ill patients were not being provided any medical treatment by the doctors at the government-run Shaheed Nirmal Mahto Medical College Hospital in Dhanbad”, the statement said.

The media report also carried pictures of the helpless patients “lying without clothes on the floor”. Reportedly, the superintendent of the hospital has stated that there are no doctors available to “treat mentally ill patients”. The hospital staff provide food to them in polythene bags, the statement said.

Accordingly, the NHRC has issued notice to the chief secretary of the Jharkahnd government, seeking detailed report within one week, it said.

The report should include the steps taken and proposed to be taken by the hospital management to improve the situation at the hospital so that the patients approaching the medical facility are treated with dignity and not denied medical care, it said.

The human rights panel said it would also like to know the present status of the medical treatment being provided to both the patients.

According to the media report, carried on June 21, a temporary partition has been created in a verandah between the high dependency units and geriatric wards and named as a ward for abandoned or unknown patients. The medical superintendent reportedly stated that there is a shortage of staff and things can work for these patients only if some NGO takes care of them, the NHRC added.

  • Published On Jun 25, 2024 at 06:00 PM IST

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