Patna: Just a medical examination report is sufficient to change the life of a person, attitude of family and friends, perspective of life and quashes all dreams in a single moment. The bitter reality of life is a common phenomenon among those found to be HIV-positive at the prestigious Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH).

The sudden change in life was shocking as some received disdain from their own family and the hospital staff while others got the courage not only to fight for themselves but for others as well.

HIV-positive Anurag (name changed) was admitted to PCMH for operation of his fractured hand. But as soon as the doctors discovered him to be suffering from AIDS, the operation was postponed until Anurag gets himself registered in Anti Retroviral Treatment (ART) centre. One and a half months later, he is still waiting for his operation but is adamant to get it done at the same hospital.

On the other hand, Patna resident and gem trader Gyan Ranjan, President of ‘Bihar Network for People Living with HIV/Aids Society’ is fighting for the rights of those suffering from HIV/Aids. Ranjan had visited PMCH after a road mishap for stitches but was refused treatment till the Hospital Superintendant intervened in the matter.

Of the 44,399 HIV-positive people in the country, 3,300 are connected to the society.

Sunita Devi, a member of the Bihar Network for People Living with HIV/Aids Society (Dropping Centre) complained about being neglected and treated rudely by the hospital staff and doctors while undergoing treatment at PMCH was always the last to get an injection and the behavior of family and friends also became negative.

These HIV-positive patients are incurring the ruthless attitude of the world but are fighting for their rights and dignity.

According to Ranjan, though the society has awakened to the plight of AIDS patients, a lot more needs to be done in this regard.

However, Dr Ramesh Prasad, Chairman, Indian Medical Association said, “Until the medical colleges are not declared as ‘third referral hospital’, the number of patients will keep on rising and providing all facilities to everyone is difficult. We cannot put several lives in danger to save the life of a single patient.”

Meanwhile, Dr Bharat Singh, Associate Professor, PMCH said, “There must be a separate Operation Theatre (OT) and special safety kit for AIDS patients, while the hospital is facing shortage of both of them. In such a condition, operation of AIDS patients can further spread the virus.”

However, turning down allegations of any partiality with the AIDS patients, DSP, PMCH, Dr RK Singh said, “There might be some delay in their operation as the OT used for operation of an AIDS patient cannot be used for other operations on the same day as we do not have a special safety kit for the doctors.”

JPN/Bureau