ISLAMABAD - Due to nonpayment of dues, the supply of liquid oxygen to Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences can be discontinued at any time, causing instant deaths of hundreds of patients being treated at Pims.

According to officials, the multinational company that supplies the liquid oxygen to the hospital has sent letters and reminders to the hospital as their dues have been pending since November 2012 amounting to Rs 16 million.

Oxygen is a backbone of every hospital. It is the most vital gas that may be needed by any patient admitted anywhere in the hospital.

“Twenty-two operation theatres, intensive care units, coronary care unit, and emergency department of the hospital need constant supply of oxygen. Besides every critical patient who comes to the hospital needs to be supplied oxygen. And discontinuation of the supply can cause deaths of many as hospital usually keeps the supply of few hours and needs constant supply on daily basis,” informed an official of the hospital.

“We have been warning the company officials that if the supply is discontinued, they would be responsible for any casualty so they have not done so yet. But since their payments of the last seven months are pending, and they have written letter and reminders to warn so they may discontinue the supply at any time,” the official fear.

According to officials, the Accountant General Pakistan Revenues (AGPR) had raised various objections on the tendering process that have been addressed.