Most government-run hospitals in Jammu and Kashmir are running blood banks and blood storage centres without licences. Despite strict laws and rules to monitor blood banks under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, no action has been taken by the Health Department against any of the erring hospitals.
As per official figures, there are at least 17 blood banks and 37 blood storage centres (BSCs) that are running without a valid licence in different government hospitals.
“Most of the blood banks in government hospitals are illegally run because their licences haven’t been renewed for the past many years,” official sources told Kashmir Reader. “Most of them are brazenly violating the norms as they haven’t fulfilled the basic requirements,” they added.
Among the 17 illegal blood banks, 10 are without a licence because they do not have the requisite facilities and equipment required for obtaining one.
As per the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, there is provision for suspension or cancellation of licences if a hospital fails to fulfil the necessary requirements. However, no action has been taken so far against any of the health institutions which include District Hospital, Kulgam; Government Bone & Joint Surgery Hospital, Barzulla, Srinagar; District Hospital, Baramulla; Sub-District Hospital, Kupwara; Sub-District Hospital, Chadoora, Budgam; MMABM District Hospital, Anantnag; District Hospital, Budgam; District Hospital, Kargil; Government Medical College Hospital, Jammu; and 166-Military Hospital, Satwari.
“The remaining seven (unlicensed) blood bank facilities are at GB Pant Hospital, Srinagar; Emergency Hospital/SDH Qazigund; District Hospital Handwara; SDH Doru, Anantnag; District Hospital, Doda; Sub-District Hospital, Kishtwar; and Emergency Hospital, Ramban,” official documents say.—GK