The Punjab University healthcare canter, which is also known as The Punjab University Teaching Hospital is spam in various aspects because, in reality, it is not even a comprehensive primary healthcare facility. It can only be called a First Aid and Referral center. Through various internal sources; several grave issues are highlighted, which require the immediate attention of the authorities. There are administrative problems due to no permanent chief medical officer or head of the Institute for the last decade or so. Every few years a new person is appointed as suits to the particular stakeholders. Being free of the cost healthcare service for the employees, students, and faculty (and their families) with a huge budget where only 30 million per annum is being spent on the private laboratories testing, it could have been a state of the art healthcare facility, if the funds have had been utilized for the good of all.
There is no proper legislature for the promotion of the medical staff or if any not being followed regarding promotions of the medical staff, as that is being manipulated through influence on the higher authorities rather than merit. There are examples, where junior doctors were promoted even during the probation period. The inefficiency of medical staff due to misuse of power by a particular group, an abundance of non-medical personnel, the influence of academic faculty and elites of the university never allowed the system to evolve, always delaying or hindering transparency, justice, indiscrimination that may have been acquired through proper digitalization, biometric recording of the patients and proper barcoding with prospective entries of the medications, etc. Because of remaining adherent to 50 years old medical books, nonphoto patient IDs, manual register work, etc.; the misuse and abuser is a common practice and the genuine patient is not getting the required care. The Day scholar University students are not given any medications and the resident students are not allowed any private consultation or private hospital reimbursements, though faculty and employees and their families are enjoying this service for decades.
The resulting mismanagement, abuse of services, systematic manipulations of the huge budget by the elite for the referrals to the private sector, and huge costs of reimbursements raise many performance and audit-related questions. More importantly, there are strong indications of embezzlements and a persistent presence of internal mafia beneficiaries of the old system of local purchase of medications, private laboratory testing, and retrospective manual entries of dispensed medication in the registers. Only long-term illness medication can be prescribed and dispensed, but a certain class is enjoying the facility of all the medications and in absentia, they usually send note written by their own hands-on simple papers directing the medical staff, what they need and if not complied by the staff, a conflict generates where authorities usually yield to the mighty. The same is with the investigations and tests of very high cost sent to private laboratories. There are habitual customers, who influence to get free of cost tests from the private laboratories (cost covered by the University of Punjab), whenever they want, whether they require it or not. There are audit paras on that practice as well inquiring, why such tests, which are costing extra millions paid after every few months are being sent to private laboratories when such facility can be easily delivered at its own laboratory or any government hospital laboratory at a much-reduced cost.
The same is the case with the medications which are acquired through procurement every year in Crores through tender, yet millions extra per annum are spent on local purchases of on-demand medicines at a much higher rate. The misuse or abuse of such a facility is a shame for those who are running it, particularly those who are making its policies. There are many other issues which may be highlighted through proper external neutral audit and investigations. A simple question to ask from the regulatory bodies like Punjab healthcare commission, PMC, or PMDC that how come such an institute where no single patient was ever admitted overnight, not a single medical or paramedical course was conducted or ever completed can be documented as a Teaching Hospital. A scam or a farce to the current standards of the healthcare management system, whatever it is… it requires urgent attention of the concerned authorities and regulatory bodies before healthcare deteriorates lower than the level of quackery by the hands of the well educated.