Bengaluru: BM Vijay Shankar, Bengaluru Urban deputy commissioner, received complaints about the government hospital located in KR Puram. Upon conducting a surprise check at the hospital, it came to light that not only were doctors missing from the hospital, but expired medicines were being administered to patients. 

Vijay Shankar has expressed shock over the fact that a government hospital has been giving away free medicines that are well past their expiry date. 

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Shankar has issued notices to tahsildar Ramalakshman and taluk medical officer Dr Chandrashekhar for being absent during their duty hours. Grade-2 tahsildar Sharadamma has been suspended for being on leave for four days, without informing the higher officers. He also orally recommended to suspend Dr Sujatha, who was not present during duty hours, while the patients were waiting in long queues.

The surprise visit also revealed that the hospital staff had not even maintained a register with a list of all the medicines in stock, and those past the expiry date. 

Times of India quoted Shankar as saying, "I paid a surprise visit to this hospital after visiting the tahsildar's office. I have been receiving complaints on the poor service being provided to in-patients as well as out-patients for quite some time."

Shankar found that commonly-prescribed medicines such as Amoxicillin and Azithromycin were well past their expiry dates. The expiry date was July 2018 for Amoxicillin and December 2018 for Azithromycin.

Shankar said that he was shocked that patients, who were already suffering, were administered expired drugs.

The district health officer has been asked to conduct an inquiry to know, who is responsible for selling expired medicines. 

Allegations have also come to the fore stating that one of the hospital employees fled the scene when he saw the deputy commissioner arrive for inspection. Several doctors and medical superintendents were also found absent. 

The Bengaluru Urban district health officer Dr KS Prakash stated that Amoxicillin is an antibiotic that is used to treat bacterial infections, cough and throat infection apart from fever. "There's a good chance that these medicines would have side effects if patients take it after the expiry date.”