HC asks state to set up dedicated cancer hospital

By Our Reporter

SHILLONG, Dec 13: The High Court of Meghalaya has observed that it is absolutely imperative that the cancer treatment in the state is augmented and a dedicated hospital for such purpose is set up.
The Court made the observation while hearing a writ petition filed by advocate Lurshaprang Shongwan on the lack of a super-specialty cancer treatment centre in the state.
The Division bench consisting of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice W. Diengdoh on Monday perused an affidavit submitted by the Joint Secretary of the Health department on behalf of the state government.
“On reading the affidavit, it appears that the total number of patients suffering from cancer in the state may be above 80,000 and the cancer wing of the civil hospital in Shillong is equipped to admit only a few persons and the out-patients’ facilities a few more,” the bench said.
The Court also noted that since cancer patients from the neighbouring states also come to Shillong, there is a crying need for augmentation of the number of beds catering to cancer patients and even the outpatients department.
The affidavit filed by the government states that the cancer wing at the Shillong Civil Hospital has started to function with 34 beds – 22 for males and 12 for females.
“Though the affidavit says that some cancer patients are accommodated in other wards also, several patients are forced to take admission in private wards,” the Court observed.
Pointing out that the affidavit refers to the habit of chewing tobacco amongst the locals that leads to the high incidence of cancer, the Court said, “In such a scenario, it is absolutely imperative that the cancer treatment in the state is augmented and a dedicated hospital for such purpose is set up.”
The Court further said that it is necessary, in public interest, to have a specialised cancer treatment centre and the state should seek appropriate funds from the Union government for such purpose after citing the high incidence of the affliction due to the lifestyle of the residents of the state.
The matter will appear four weeks after the vacation and the state has been asked to file a further affidavit to indicate the measures adopted to tackle the large number of patients immediately even as the steps to augment facilities may be taken up at a later date.

Get real time updates directly on your device, subscribe now.

Comments are closed.