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Wednesday, Sep 18, 2019

PGIMER committee finds difficult to make uniform policy for token system

The committee says different department have their own requirements, so rather than one policy for room distribution, staggered approach at three levels mooted.

punjab Updated: Sep 21, 2018 19:46 IST
Tanbir Dhaliwal
Tanbir Dhaliwal
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
The new OPD, inaugurated in 2001, was meant to cater to 3,500 patients per day; now it gets around 7,000 patients.
The new OPD, inaugurated in 2001, was meant to cater to 3,500 patients per day; now it gets around 7,000 patients. (Ravi Kumar/HT)

The committee to implement the Queue Management System at the New Out Patient Department (OPD) of the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and research (PGIMER) is finding it difficult to formulate a uniform policy for token system. The members have suggested “staggered approach” to manage the patients’ load.

To ease the burden on the patients and their relatives to get swift access to treatment at the New OPD at the PGIMER, committee was constituted.

In August, a meeting of the committee was held for the work of ‘Supply, Installation, Testing and Commissioning of Queue Management System for New OPD, PGIMER’, under the chairmanship of Professor Sanjay Jain. The main focus was on managing the ever increasing patient load at the Out Patient Department.

Only 3% register online

On a daily basis, over 7,000 patients register themselves in the New OPD and hardly 200 register online, which is around 3%.

The three floors of the OPD are packed to the brim with 2,000 patients each. Equal number of attendants can be added to each floor, taking the number to around 4,000.

However, when inaugurated in 2001, the New Out Patient Department was meant to cater to 3,500 patients per day.

In the absence of efficient patient management system, people wait for their turns for several hours. Restless, they knock at the doctors’ room and heated discussions are also witnessed.


Panel listed 15 points to manage load

The committee listed as many as 15 suggestions to manage the patient load.“Patients should be staggered at three levels – outside the OPD, inside the Out Patient Department and outside the doctor’s room.

Also, time slots should be given and different colour stickers can be used. Security should be strengthened and only one attendant should be allowed with a patient,” the panel suggests.

“Patient with special needs, handicaps or staff members should be separate from others. Physiotherapy and canteen may be shifted and the space can be used for waiting area,” the panel adds.

“Patient capping should be done for new patients after assessment of the maximum capacity of the intake of patients versus strength of doctors,” report mentions. It calls for raising the number of pre-appointments.

Dr Sanjay Jain said, “Queue management system involves lots of things and not only token system. The token system is feasible but a lot of planning has to be done to ensure smooth implementation.”

“It’s because in one room, doctors from different departments sit on different days. And then there number also varies as their duty. But we have given many other suggestions for better management,” said Dr Sanjay. 

First Published: Sep 21, 2018 14:29 IST