Manipur: COVID-19 patients scatter outside ward over lack of proper food at JNIMS
Imphal: In an alarming sight that has now been circulated on social media, several coronavirus-infected persons currently undergoing treatment at Manipur’s Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Science (JNIMS) in Imphal were seen breaking the doors and storming out of the COVID-19 care ward to protest against the poor quality of food given to them for months.
As per sources from JNIMS, the incident happened around 1 pm when the patients started breaking the main doors and staged protest outside the COVID-19 care facility of the hospital demanding nutritious food on time.
Patients have been reportedly demanding the hospital management for better food management for months but their complaints were remained unattended, said the sources.
At least 100 persons who tested positive for COVID-19, including children and patients having other health complications, are currently undergoing treatment at the hospital.
The patients, as per sources, were served only rice and dal with some vegetables for meals and no evening tea or snacks. Not only the poor quality of food, patients are protesting against the delay in providing food to them.
Sources also said that breakfast was normally supposed to serve to them between 7:30 am and 9:30 am; however, it often gets delayed causing severe inconvenience to patients, especially those who are on heavy medication.
Speaking with EastMojo, JNIMS medical superintendent Prof T Rajen Singh informed that due to the ongoing lockdown, supplies for vegetable and other essential items were limited resulting in the inability to provide non-vegetarian food to the patients.
According to Singh, catering services for the patients were taken care of by a private agency after getting approval from the government and for the last two weeks, patients were being served only dal, eggs and some vegetables due to non-availability of other protein foods.
“We used to serve them non-veg food along with rice for dinner between 7:30 pm and 9:30 pm and lunch from 11 am to 1 pm with rice, dal and some mixed vegetables. But for the last two weeks, we were unable to do so,” said Singh.
Following the latest incident, JNIMS authority along with the private food catering have called for a meeting at 3:30 pm and work out the modality, as per the official.