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Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Punjab govt launches ‘Care Companion’ programme: Kin of patients to get training in basic medical skills

Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu said this initiative is expected to improve mother and child health services in the state. He said “the mission was to turn hospital hallways/wards into classrooms and tap the most compassionate and willing resource available for care”.

By: Express News Service | Ludhiana |
August 26, 2021 8:47:13 am
Care Companion programme was also recognised by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Govt of India, at the National Health Innovation Summit in 2019.

TO ENGAGE families of patients in helping them recover faster, the Punjab government Wednesday launched ‘Care Companion’ programme (CCP) in sub-divisional hospitals (SDHs), under which family members will be given training in basic medical skills.

Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu said this initiative is expected to improve mother and child health services in the state. He said “the mission was to turn hospital hallways/wards into classrooms and tap the most compassionate and willing resource available for care”.

Sidhu said the Punjab government has started this scheme to sensitise a patient’s family on taking care of him/her. Punjab has now become the first state to extend the programme in sub-division hospitals. The health minister said India accounts for over 22 per cent of newborn deaths, with 5,22,000 deaths annually, more than any other country in the world. It is estimated that 70 per cent of deaths in children under 5 are preventable through better health practices, many of them actionable at home.
He said CCP has been shown to decrease neonatal mortality, burden of re-admissions, post discharge complications and increased levels of hospital hygiene, productivity of nurses, and patient satisfaction in the public healthcare institutes in Punjab. The programme has been operational in areas of maternal and child health and general and surgical patient care.

He further said that the Care Companion programme was also recognised by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Govt of India, at the National Health Innovation Summit in 2019. The initiative has started as pilot in 6 district hospitals in 2017 for postnatal care services, then expanded to all 22 district hospitals including antenatal and sick newborn care curriculum in 2018. With the promising results, the Care Companion programme for medical and surgical condition areas was also launched for 22 district hospitals in 2019.

Director Health Services (Family Welfare) Dr Andesh Kang said that so far, close to 1,100 nurses have been trained in this programme in Punjab and they in turn have trained more than 2.43 lakh family caregivers in the last 4 years. She said that ‘Noora Health’ has also provided support to the pandemic response thereby assisting the state government. Not only were Covid awareness messaging sent through Care Companion sessions in hospitals but also through tele-training and IVRS-based messaging to Covid patients and their caregivers.

State Programme Officer, CCP, Dr Baljit Kaur said that in an effort to ensure the benefits of this program reach more people, the Punjab health department has decided to expand the program into sub-divisional hospitals (SDHs) across the state.

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