AIIMS OPD to start from Thursday; 15 patients per OPD allowed every day
Only 15 patients per OPD will be allowed in a day for any department. No evening speciality clinic will be open in the first phase.Updated: Jun 24, 2020 02:54 IST
The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi, will restart its out patient department (OPD) services from Thursday, three months after it had to close down in the wake of Coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak. To begin with, the OPDs will be open only for old, follow-up patients.
“It will be limited OPD consultations in the beginning, with only those old, follow-up patients called on prior appointment, who need physical examination. Later the services will be open for new patients,” said Dr Aarti Vij, spokesperson, AIIMS.
Only 15 patients per OPD will be allowed in a day for any department. No evening speciality clinic will be open in the first phase.
“It will be the prerogative of the departments to call patients directly or screen them through tele-consultation before giving a physical appointment…,” AIIMS said in a statement.
The appointments will be given online through hospital’s computer facility.
On March 24, the hospital had closed all its non-emergency departments, including surgical departments and specialty clinics, stopped seeing all new and follow up patients, and left only its emergency open for non-Covid 19 patients.
The decision was in line with a Union health ministry directive, asking hospitals to postpone all non-essential services and elective procedures so as to free up ventilators and intensive care unit beds so that there is no shortage in case there was a surge in Covid-19 cases.
In April, the hospital had started teleconsultation facility for its follow-up cases, for which an appointment was to be sought online.
“Preference will be given to online consultation that many departments are successfully managing such as medicine, dermatology etc. Those departments that are managing well through telemedicine will be asked to continue doing so,” said Dr Vij.
Since March 25, this year, AIIMS has provided tele-consultation to 61,000 patients, and 15, 810 patients were seen in the hospital’s cancer institute. The hospital had its emergency and casualty departments running 24x7, with 15,480 patients have been treated in all. Close to 6,000 emergency surgeries (2,753) and special procedures (2,242) have been performed and 11, 637 non-Covid 19 admissions having taken place.
“The hospital was never really shut; we were running our emergency department around the clock. Also, cancer centre was functioning regularly with people coming for chemo and other therapies. The dialysis units were also running to their full capacity even during lockdown for patients with chronic kidney disease. Now we are trying to open the rest of the services in a phased manner, but preference will be given to those departments where physical examination is necessary,” said Dr Vij.