With Tamil Nadu gearing up for elections next year, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Monday launched a project to set up 2,000 mini-clinics across the state to provide essential healthcare services to the downtrodden.
People will be treated for minor ailments like cold, fever, headache, etc at these clinics, which are being set up to reduce overcrowding in government hospitals that are already packed with Covid-19 cases.
Palaniswami inaugurated the state’s first mini-clinic in Royapuram in north Chennai. The Greater Chennai Corporation has planned to establish 200 such clinics in the city and 47 will be set up in the first phase. About 20 clinics have started operations across the city.
Calling the initiative a “historic achievement”, Edappadi said the AIADMK government would continue to provide welfare measures for the downtrodden and move forward on the path laid down by former TN CMs MG Ramachandran and J Jayalalithaa. Edappadi said his aim was to strengthen the healthcare facilities in the state and create a “disease-free life” for the people of Tamil Nadu.
Edappadi was accompanied by Deputy Chief Minister O Pannerselvam, Fishery Minister D Jayakumar and other senior ministers and AIADMK functionaries at the event.
The mini-clinics will be open in the morning between 8 am to 12 pm and later in the evening between 4 pm to 8 pm. The clinics will have a doctor, a nurse, and an all-purpose hospital worker each with other necessary medical equipment.
The mini-clinics will comprise of a well-illuminated room — a minimum of 200 square feet in the own/rented building and a separate waiting area/examining room. Apart from these, a mini pharmacy to store medicines, minor surgical equipment and other necessary items will be set up near these clinics.
As many as 630 mini-clinics will be set up across the state within Tuesday. In Phase II, another 630 clinics will be established and 740 will be set up in Phase III.
According to officials, there are 1,851 primary healthcare centers and for every 8 km, there is a hospital. The mini clinics will be set up at a distance of 3 km. As per the government order issued on December 5, a total of 1,400 mini clinics have been proposed to be established in rural areas.
“The scheme is initially sanctioned for a period of one year and based on need and performance, a decision for further continuance will be taken,” the order read.
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