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Free medicines meant for the poor dumped after expiry

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In a district, that is infamous for its frail health care system, medicines worth several lakh rupees were found dumped at a secluded place, on Saturday.

The huge stock of medicines allegedly had expired in the storeroom of Referral Hospital Simaria, which falls under the Simaria subdivision of Chatra district.

This negligence has confirmed the claims of many that doctors and other staff posted in the hospital never cared to give the free medicines to needy patients, thereby resulting in the expiry of this huge stock of medicines. Notably, all the medicines had expired in 2012 but the hospital staff including the doctors didn’t have the time to check the medicine stock.

The dumped medicines included 40 bags of expired DDT (Dichloro Diphenyl Trichloro-ethane), used to treat malaria and other insect borne diseases along with several injections and tablets.

Locals, who spotted the dumped medicines, complained about the hospital not providing free medicines to the poor only to dump them after they expire. “Most of the hospital staff get a fixed commission from local medicine retailers and so they never give us free medicines. They ask us to buy from the market. They are not bothered about our financial burden,” accused one of the villagers.

The hospital allegedly had dumped the medicines in a secluded place, close to the hospital. People hardly visit the spot. But the huge dump of medical waste made people take notice.

Doctors and other staff of the hospital refused to comment or explain how all the medicine had expired.

A health department official on condition of anonymity said, “It’s a huge lapse on the part of the doctors. They didn’t care to give these medicines to the needy patients.” He added, “The government is providing medicines to every healthcare centre to ensure that needy patients get the medicines for free. But, look at how government funds are wasted.”

When The Telegraph online contacted Arun Kumar Paswan, the civil surgeon of Chatra district, he confirmed the news and informed that the investigation is on and the details related to the dumping of medicines are being collected from Simaria Health Department’s officials. Paswan added, “I will ensure that a proper inv

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