By Susitha Fernando
Colombo, Mar 29 (IANS): Visiting Indian External Affairs Minister S. Jaishnakar on Tuesday offered assistance to a Sri Lankan government hospital which had to halt all surgeries due to lack of medicines.
Disturbed over the news that the Peradeniya Teaching Hospital in Kandy has halted all surgeries, Jaishnakar directed the Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, Gopal Baglay to find out how New Delhi could assist in resolving the issue.
Subsequently Indian envoy contacted senior medical officials attached to the hospital and had inquired about the required medicines that are needed to continue regular surgeries.
At a meeting by hospital authorities on Monday, a decision had been taken to suspend all surgeries due to the severe shortage of drugs including anesthesia drug, Neostigmine used to reverse the effects of anesthesia medication used during surgery.
The severe dollar crisis has led Sri Lanka to curtail purchase major imports including essential medicines leading shortage of essential medicines both in state hospitals and private pharmacies.
Since January, India has offered Sri Lanka nearly $2.5 billion financial assistance, including $1 billion credit line on March 17, to buy medicine, food and other essentials.