Tshering Namgyal | Mongar

The regional referral hospital in Mongar is in short of Ear Nose Throat (ENT) specialists, psychiatrists and a full time pediatrician.

While the hospital administration expects an ENT specialist to join early next year, they are concerned about the lack of psychiatrists and a pediatrician. Although the hospital got a pediatrician for a month starting August 14, public raised their concerns, as the duration is closer to completion.

The regional hospital was without pediatrician for around eight months after the former pediatrician got transferred in January this year.

Hospital administrative officer, Karma Yeshi said a pediatrician from Trashigang district hospital ran the department for two months on deputation after the former pediatrician got transferred. On other days, it was managed by general duty medical officers (GDMOs).

According to sources, three pediatricians were appointed to the regional hospital, but they appealed, against the transfer, to the ministry on personal ground and the transfer order for two was revoked. The order for the third was deferred from June until December this year.

Health officials said pediatrician is as important as medical specialists in the regional hospital, as the duty involves looking after Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), pediatric ward and Neonate ward (Gyanae ward) despite attending consultation calls from the patients and health officials from the eastern region.

There were 36 cases admitted in PICU, 123 in NICU, 179 at pediatric ward and 141 neonate unit this year of which, 26 were referred to the national referral hospital.

However, the hospital is now equipped with medical specialists in three fields. The hospital now has a full time pathologist, radiologist and a gynecologist. The hospital did not have a radiologist from July 2018 and the gynecologist from he beginning of last year. They also didn’t have a pathologist for two years.

The gynecologist and radiologist joined the department towards the end of last year while the pathologist joined last month.

Hospital officials said gynecologists and radiologists from the JDWNRH managed on rotational basis in between during their absence.

Two full time specialists joined towards the end of last year.

With a radiologist in place, the CT Scan costing approximately Nu 30 million, donated by JICA and newly installed in July last year has been fully operational.

“With a full time radiologist and gynecologist now, the two issues are solved now,” Karma Yeshi said.

However, the hospital is still in need of a histology technician to assist the pathologist, without whom, hospital staff say, the pathologist’s service would be affected. Karma Yeshi said the hospital has been without histology technician for more than four years and got one this time whose transfer order has been deferred till December this year.

Hospital officials said during the absence of specialists in the specific fields, different cases have been managed and looked after by a single medical specialist.

The Mongar regional referral hospital referred more than 200 patients to Thimphu last year in the absence of specialists.