The Union government-run Ram Manohar Lohia (RML) hospital is in the process of becoming Delhi’s first government hospital to keep all its departments open round the clock all through the week.
In a proposal — to be sent to the Union health ministry on Wednesday — the hospital authorities have asked for the requisite clearance to offer all the facilities 24X7 to its patients including those belonging to the out patient department (OPD).
“Only the emergency section functions round the clock. We want to create a system wherein all our departments work round the clock,” said Dr T.S. Sidhu, medical superintendent (MS), RML. “The proposal is on fast track with the ministry and will be executed soon.”
The departments that do not function at night are usually the ones that diagnose diseases such as the departments of microbiology, radiology, pathology and the blood bank.
The move is expected to help cut down the overall time for declaration of test results. It will also benefit regular patients whose attendants will not have to run around with them looking for private diagnostic labs to get the tests done.
The magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) facility, for instance, used in radiology to visualise detailed internal structure, is not available in the hospital after 4 in the evening, and a person is expected to get it done privately from outside in case of landing even minutes after the set time.
“It’s not intentional, but we have our limitations,” said Dr Sidhu. The hospital plans to hire extra staff — some 50 odd doctors, paramedics and technicians — to work in three shifts once the departments start functioning 24X7.
To also ensure people get medicines round the clock, the hospital authorities have designated two official pharmacists near the hospital.