Currently, data are available for 484 out of 34 rural hospitals, primary health centers (PHCs), district and sub-district hospitals in Maharashtra (Maharashtra). 88 did a fire audit and only 45 got a NOC. A mock fire drill has been done on 218 at least once.
National Health Mission Director N Ramaswamy said, “Many hospitals are decades old and were handed over to us by the PWD without obtaining an NOC for fire safety. Soon, we will issue a circular to all districts to ensure that a hospital starts functioning only after getting the necessary permission.
With PWD in which we will clearly mention who is responsible for fire audit, NOC and other permissions. Of the 26 government hospitals evaluated in Pune, only four have conducted FIRE safety audits, and none have NOCs. One NOC from the fire department, in 13 hospitals in Thane, seven have conducted fire audits and two have NOCs.
Some districts have shown very poor protocol for all their government hospitals in view of fire safety. Nandurbar, Dhule, Satara, Jalgaon and Sindhudurg have neither conducted a single fire audit nor did they have a NOC from the Fire Department for any hospital till date.
Issued a letter to conduct a fire audit
District Health Officer (DHO) in Nandurbar, Dr. Nitin Borke said that the PHC had fire extinguishing equipment, but no training has been given to the fire staff. He said, "After the fire incident in Bhandara, I issued a letter to all PHCs to conduct a fire audit" This letter was issued on January 11, two days after the Bhandara hospital accident.
In Chandrapur, DHO Dr Raj Gehlot conducted a mock drill on 11 January to watch the preparations at the PHC. “We have also asked for an audit on the requirement for FIRE safety equipment. Soon, a proposal will be submitted to the management. " “We do not have any guidelines as to how a fire audit should be conducted regularly. We are now proposing that a fire audit or at least mock drill should be a regular practice. "