Chennai: The Madras High Court has granted the Tamil Nadu government three months time to implement fully its order with regard to provision of ramps and fire-fighting equipment in hospitals in the state.
The First Bench comprising Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice Abdul Quddhose gave the order on a PIL by Jawaharlal Shanmugam, seeking a direction to make it mandatory to provide ramp facility in hospitals from top-most floor to ground floor for easy evacuation of patients during emergencies.
The petitioner, who was made member of an expert panel, was asked to inspect and monitor fire-fighting arrangements in hospitals and medical centres, both government and private in the state along with the assistance of Dr P R Subas Chandran, the report said.
As per the status report, of the 203 multi-storied buildings in tertiary care institutions (medical college hospitals), ramp facilities were available in 105 while 98 buildings don’t have them.
In secondary care institutions (district/taluk hospitals), of the 326 multi-storied buildings, ramp facilities were available in 211 while they were not available in 95 buildings.
It was submitted in the report that inspection of private hospitals was carried out from December 5 to 12 last in Chennai district by forming six teams.
The petitioner also accompanied the team and a total of 296 hospitals in Chennai were inspected, it added.
District-level teams have been formed by Joint Directors of Health Services, the report said, adding so far 67 per cent of hospitals (1,977 out of 2,934 hospitals) were inspected in the districts.
The report said the engineer-in-chief (Buildings) had submitted a detailed estimate to the tune of Rs 29.71 crore for construction of ramps and making fire-fighting arrangements for secondary care institutions and Rs 55.92 crore for tertiary care institutions.
The proposals were sent to the Finance Department and the government had already sanctioned Rs 1.154 crore for providing sprinkler system at the general hospital in Chennai.
The government also sought three months time for reporting compliance of the order dated April 7 last.