SKIMS PET Scan can handle 10 patients a day, starts formally from Monday


by Aarif Shah / Fazil Buchh

SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti today in presence of Minister for Health and Medical Education, Asiya Naqash and Minister for Education Syed Altaf Bukhari inaugurated PET Scan and various high-end patient care facilities of Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) in an e- inauguration ceremony at SKICC. She inaugurated at SKICC and the clappings with standing ovation took place in the SKIMS.

A ceremony was organised at SKIMS auditorium in this regard. Apart from PET CT-Scan, Digital Subtraction Angiography (DAS) Lab, Emergency Expansion, Out Patient Department Expansion, Maternity Extension, Board Room, Physical Medicine and rehabilitation equipment and State Cancer Institute (SCI) were dedicated to the public of Jammu and Kashmir.

Positron-emission tomography (PET) is used to detect cancerous tissues and cells in the body that may not always be found through computed tomography (CT) or Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). This facility was not available to Kashmir or to Jammu even though Kashmir has been reporting a huge increase in the cancer patients, off late. They would usually go to Delhi for the mandatory test before the treatments.

“PET scan would be of great use for cancer patients, patients suffering from Cardiological and neurological problems. It took us 3-5 years to complete formal process of its installation in J&K,” said Dr Tanveer Ahmad Rather to Kashmir Life. Meanwhile, the doctor also complained about the dearth of manpower in the Department of Nuclear Medicine SKIMS.

Earlier patients had to go outside the state for PET scan which was very inconvenient and costly. It cost Rs 40 – 50 thousand plus mental and physical fatigue. “But now we can treat maximum 10 patients daily”, he added.

The programme was organised by Electronics Communication and Technology department of the institute. SKIMS professionals took a strong exception to the remote inauguration of the major facility. “We were told that presence was mandatory and then a screen was put on and we were asked to give a standing ovation,” one professional serving the SLIMS said. “We saw it as humiliation. The Chief Minister could have flown a bit to the hospital and done it there. It is a deemed university and it was not a political jalsa.”

A SKIMS spokesperson said the Chief Minister inaugurated various facilities including PET CT-Scan, Digital Subtraction Angiography (DSA) Lab, Outpatient Department Expansion, Emergency Expansion, Maternity Extension, State Cancer Institute (SCI), Board Room, Physical Medicine & rehabilitation Equipment and Store Block.

Inauguration done, the spokesperson did not offer details about how the particular section of SLIMS would like the patients to come and register. It offered no idea about the number of scans that are required to be done, daily, in Kashmir.

The PET Scan facility was being tested for various weeks in the SKIMS. However, it is expected to start formally on Monday. Inauguration of the facilities came a day after the government attached the services of its Director and three senior doctors, the latter for resorting to private practice.


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