Chemotherapy resumes at TRIHMS after two weeks; patients rue abrupt halt in treatment

Staff Reporter
NAHARLAGUN, Jun 1: Chemotherapy for cancer patients at the tertiary cancer centre (TCC) of the Tomo Riba Institute of Health & Medical Sciences (TRIHMS) here resumed recently, nearly two weeks after treatment was temporarily halted, owing to a defect in the machine.
Several cancer patients who are receiving treatment have expressed sadness over the abrupt fortnight-long halt in their treatment.
“A lot of poor patients like us depend on the TRIHMS for treatment, and we face much difficulty when our ongoing treatment is affected. As cancer patients, we are already under much stress; this kind of situation only adds to our stress,” said one of the patients.
The TCC has two main chemotherapy machines.
When contacted by this daily, TRIHMS Radiation & Oncology Department Head, Dr S Tsering on Monday informed that after the spare motor of a chemotherapy machine stopped functioning due to a defect, the hospital authorities had to order the part from Bangalore for repair.
“Due to the ongoing lockdown, it was difficult to arrange a vehicle to transport the part. We had to hire a separate vehicle for the purpose, which resulted in the delay,” he explained, adding that the repair has been done and treatment of patients has resumed.
Around 30 patients receive radiation treatment at the centre every day.
Meanwhile, many patients have complained about the shortage of workers at the TCC, stating that only four nurses are presently engaged to take care of the patients.
Acknowledging the fact, Dr Tsering said, “We had started indoor patient department (IPD) in the centre sometime back, but due to the shortage of staff in the main hospital, the nurses were later shifted to the new building (IPD). Currently, four nurses on daycare duty take care of around 20 to 25 patients every day.
“There is indeed shortage of human resource, especially during this pandemic when staffers have to carry out both Covid and non-Covid duties,” Dr Tsering said.