Patna: Now eye treatment will be easy and convenient at (PMCH) Patna Medical College and Hospital as they are set to start an eye bank from 1st of July.
“We are committed to open the eye bank at PMCH from July 1st. All necessary equipment below Rs 5 lakh have been bought, while those above Rs 5 lakh have to be bought by the Bihar Medical Services and Infrastructure Corporation Limited (BMSICL),” said PMCH principal Dr Ajit Kumar Verma. “The list for such equipment has been handed over to the corporation. As soon as we get the equipment, we will start the eye bank.”
“In fact, the eye bank at PMCH was due to roll out in May itself but because of some procedural delays it could not happen,” said Dr Verma.
On August 11, 2017, the chief minister had announced that eye banks will be set up in all Bihar medical colleges and at the super-speciality eye hospital , by the year-end. “The step will facilitate eye donation campaign,” Nitish had told at the function organised by Dadhichi Dehdan Samiti on International Organ Donation Day.
Way back in 2011, deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi had said steps were being taken to open an eye bank at PMCH in near future to facilitate eye donation. But it took almost seven years to make the dream come true.
Among government hospitals in the state, only Indira Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences (IGIMS) has an eye bank at present. An eye bank is also slated to be opened at Nalanda Medical College and Hospital (NMCH) shortly. Moreover, an eye bank is also due to start at Bihar Red Cross in July as per local news.
Bihar’s Red Cross head Dr Vinay Bahadur Sinha said opening of the eye bank here will prove to be a boon for patients who have to go out of the state for corneal transplant.
PMCH has formed a team of three trained doctors for extraction of cornea. It has also arranged for an ambulance, which would be used for the eye bank and would run 24×7. Doctors associated with the eye bank would use the ambulance to reach the donor’s place so that the cornea could be extracted on time.
“Corneal extraction should be done within six hours of death. So timing is crucial to reach the donor’s place. Even the extracted cornea cannot be used after a certain time. The extracted cornea can be kept for seven days using different media,” Dr Verma said.
“A list of paramedics had already been sent to the health department who has to undergo training for the eye bank and corneal transplant,” Dr Verma said, adding: “The paramedics will be trained from IGIMS, where corneal transplant is already being done.”
Though an eye bank was functional at PMCH on paper since 1986, it remained a non-starter. The authorities in the past have claimed lack of equipment, manpower and other reasons for failing to have a fully functional eye bank.
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