Just a year back, hundreds of patients and doctors were stranded for days at the Charity Hospital, when the hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans. On the 1-year anniversary of the storm, Charles Gibson reports from that hospital.
"When you look around at where I'm standing, you might think you're in a warehouse or some kind of abandoned building, but, actually, this is a hospital," says Charles.
Charity Hospital served the poor and uninsured people in New Orleans. It had 500 beds beside the Tulane University Hospital.
The hurricane severely damaged the hospital. The damage was to such an extent that opening a new hospital would cost less than rebuilding it. The patients from Charity Hospital were shifted to an old Lord and Taylor department store that vacated before the storm. The hospital could not find a better place. Now it has emergency rooms also. But the capacity is not enough to meet the requirement.
"Doctors here tell you that if a patient comes in on Monday morning with something that is not an acute emergency, he or she may wind up waiting six to eight hours for medical care."
Precisely, after one year of being hit by Katrina, there is not enough medical care for the city's population that is almost half of last year's.