GUNTUR : Patients and their attendants are finding it difficult to quench their thirst in the hot summer as the Guntur General Hospital (GGH) is reeling under severe drinking water crisis.
According to the Guntur Municipal Corporation officials, 4 lakh litres of water per day is being supplied to the GGH from the overhead tank at Naaz centre. There are 12 borewells on the GGH premises. Three of the borewells have dried up.
The GGH is drawing 1.5 lakh litres of water a day from the borewells to meet its requirements. The hospital has two Reverse Osmosis (RO) plants, one at the emergency ward and the other at the outpatients ward.
According to the GGH officials, if the GMC supplies 6 lakh litres of water per day from the Naaz centre overhead tank and 1.5 lakh litres of water from the overhead tank at the court area, there will not be any drinking water problem.
As the GGH is getting 4 lakh litres of water only a day from the GMC, there is a difference of 3.5 lakh litres between demand and supply, which has resulted in drinking water crisis.
On an average, 5,000 outpatients visit the hospital a day. The number of inpatients in the hospital is put at 1,150. Their attendants are not less than 1,000 members. The hospital has a total staff strength of about 2,000.
Hence, the GGH has to meet the drinking water needs of 8,000 people a day. The demand for water has gone up with the advent of summer.
D Ramanamma, an inpatient, said: “We are forced to buy mineral water from outside due to non-availability of adequate drinking water on the GGH premises. Poor people visiting the hospital are finding it difficult to buy mineral water bottles to quench their thirst.”
Having learnt about the drinking water crisis, Civil Supplies Minister Prathipati Pulla Rao held a meeting with District Collector Kantilal Dande, GMC Commissioner S Nagalakshmi and the hospital authorities and asked them to ensure that patients do not face any drinking water problem.
Following the directive of the minister, GMC Waterworks Department Executive Engineer A Lakshmaiah started monitoring the supply of water to the GGH.
On Friday, 6 lakh litres of water was supplied from Naaz centre overhead tank and 1.5 lakh litres from the court area tank to the GGH to solve the water crisis. Tankers have also been arranged to supply water to the hospital.
According to Dr Y Ramesh, Resident Medical Officer, the storage capacity of GGH water tanks is 11 lakh litres. A proposal for construction of another tank on the hospital premises will be made at the review meeting on drinking water problem scheduled for Monday, which will be attended by Civil Supplies Minister Pulla Rao and Health Minister K Srinivas.
If the GMC supplies 7.5 lakh litres of water a day, there will be no problem. In view of the drinking water crisis, the hospital authorities have directed the staff to conserve water. They have also been asked to ensure that attendants of patients do not wash clothes on the GGH premises.
All measures have been taken to resolve the water crisis in the summer, the RMO added.