It is an open secret that there is a shortage of doctors in government hospitals. Post-mortem centres run by the state police department are suffering the same plight. Due to the shortage of doctors, post-mortem centres have stopped functioning after evening at Cooper, Rajawadi, Bhagavati and JJ hospital.
The doctors, who have post graduate specialisations to deal with patient care in rural areas, have been working in the post-mortem wards of hospitals like Cooper, Bhagwati and Rajawadi. However, the Directorate of Health Services (DHS) had decided to recall these doctors since health care is rural areas is suffering a staff shortage.
This move will create chaos in the future, resulting in handing over the deceased's bodies to the relatives late. All medico legal cases of post-mortem being carried out in civic and state-run hospitals are controlled by police surgeons. There are seven post-mortem centres in the city. Three — KEM, Sion and Nair hospitals — operated by the BMC, earlier stopped work in the evening, they only work during the day.
"There is a shortage of doctors at autopsy centres, because of which some centres' work has been stopped post evening. We have already sent a proposal to the health department to provide doctors and hopefully, all vacant posts will be filled soon," said Dr S M Patil, police surgeon, Nagpada Police hospital.
According to experts, over 10,000 post-mortems are carried out at these centres annually. Mumbai needs 15 post-mortem centres, but has only nine.
On condition of anonymity, a senior doctor from Sir JJ group of hospitals, has, on several occasions, requested the forensic department and doctors of JJ hospital to carry out autopsy work during an emergency.