Three months after it closed amid the Covid-19 lockdown, OPD services at AIIMS are set to resume from June 25 for follow-up patients — initially for not more than 15 patients a day in each department.
A circular issued by Medical Superintendent Dr D K Sharma on Tuesday said OPD services will initially be available for follow-up patients, and a limited number of new patients will be allowed, for departments willing to begin physical OPD consultation.
“It will be the prerogative of the departments to call patients directly or screen them through teleconsultation before giving a physical appointment. Patients can be given an appointment for OPD consultation directly by the department or through the computer facility, as decided by the department concerned,” said the circular.
“However, if an appointment is given by the department, the departmental appointment list will have to be intimated to the computer facility and faculty in-charge of the OPD 48 hours in advance,” the circular added.
However, no appointments will be given for evening specialty clinics in the first phase of OPD reopening. On March 18, the medical institute had sent an advisory to OPD patients on their registered phone numbers requesting them to postpone their appointments. From March 20, the hospital curtailed elective surgeries, and a screening area was developed for patients with symptoms of respiratory tract infections.
Since then, AIIMS has been providing tele-consultancy to all patients currently undergoing treatment at the hospital. Emergency services were also operational to cater to crucial cases during the lockdown.
“The institute has provided 61,000 tele-consultations to follow-up patients to reduce the need for them to visit the facility during the coronavirus-forced lockdown between March 25 and June 10,” said Dr Aarti Vij, spokesperson, AIIMS.
However, a total of 731 healthcare workers from the institute, including nine faculty members, 35 resident doctors and 136 nurses, have been infected with Covid-19 so far. According to the administration, around 75% of them have returned to duty.
AIIMS caters to over 15,000 patients in its OPD on a daily basis. In the absence of OPD services, several patients have been running from pillar to post for treatment. For registration of patients, it has been advised that they visit the new Rajkumari Amrit Kaur (RAK) OPD. Trauma emergency services will continue to function from the ground floor of the old RAK OPD.
All heads of clinical departments at AIIMS have been requested to provide information of the date of resumption of physical OPD for patients, and a daily list of patients, with their phone numbers, who have been given an appointment for physical consultation.
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