The facility of evening outpatient department (OPD) at urban primary health centres (UPHCs) that started in this June this year has been getting a ‘good response’ as the number of people visiting the centers is going up.
The health department has been running evening OPDs at eight UPHCs including Aman Nagar, Basti Danishmandan, Maqsudan, Basti Bawa Khel, Basti Nau, Bhargo camp, Garha and Qazi Mandi.
In June, these UPHCs registered 1,832 patients and in August, the number went up to 3,100 patients.
The UPHCs had been opened under the National Health Mission programme by the health department to provide healthcare to working-class people who cannot come to health centres or district hospitals in morning hours. These open at 4pm and close at 8 pm and MD or MBBS doctors are appointed as part-time medical officers for the health centres. The facility provides free medicines, which are available in the civil hospital, community and primary health centres.
“The migrant daily wagers, senior citizens, domestic maids and other categories of employees who cannot visit morning OPDs due to the nature of their jobs benefited from this scheme,” said civil surgeon Dr Rajiv Bhalla.
Most of the lower-middle-class families are at work in the morning, so camps in the first half of the day are of little use to them, he said, adding that medical camps will also be organised in these UPHCs in the coming days in which specialists will be hired by the department to take expert care to people’s doorsteps.
Garha UPHC is one of leading health center from others which register maximum patients.
Dr Tarsem Rattu, a retired senior medical officer who looks after evening OPD at Garha UPHC said that as the response of people is positive, the department has also deputed additional staff here to tackle the crowd.
Initially, we faced problem due to lack of awareness about evening OPDs among the residents but now it has changed, he said. At present, the Garha UPHC is operating from a local Gurdwara.