A document entitled “Comprehensive Guidelines For OPD/ IPD Services in Ophthalmology Hospitals/ Clinics Under New Normal: Living With Covid-19” was recently released, and is a compilation of the best practices to contain the spread of Covid-19 in a healthcare facility in general and an eyecare facility in particular.
Orbis India recently partnered with Quality and Accreditation Institute (QIA) to release the guidelines. Dr Promila Gupta, Principal Consultant, Director General of Health Services (MoHFW) released the guidelines reiterating the importance of the healthcare system, which is reorganising to mitigate the impact of the pandemic.
Dr Kuldeep Dole, Medical Director of Poona Blind Men’s Association H V Desai Eye hospital and expert contributing member of the guidelines said these give precise information on how to ensure staff and patient safety during the delivery of healthcare.
“During the initial lockdown, many hospitals struggled to procure PPE kits. There weren’t immediate inexpensive options for some hospitals. Doctors had to be on-duty and take care of patients, but did not have protective gear in some parts of the country. Some resorted to making them in-house with available resources, while some others trained their human resources to produce them,” Dole said.
“Doctors and hospital staff were on the frontlines and we wanted to help the community. But there were many questions: like how to deal with emergency cases, were there ample protocols in place to ensure patient safety and where there ample resources to ensure doctor and hospital staff’s safety,” Dole said. “Hospitals started adopting and devising their own protocols. The guidelines also serve the purpose of being a ready document for reference to ensure safety measures for hospital staff and patients in general. It can help us even beyond the pandemic.”
The guidelines recommend the use of appropriate material such as PPE and sanitisation agents at various service delivery points and deals extensively in ways to ensure physical distancing, training of human resources, creating awareness in patients and need of infrastructure modification, especially air conditioning practices in Operation Theatres (OTs).
“As these guidelines have been reviewed by the WHO-SEARO along with the Government of India, Centres of Excellence in eyecare and all the major institutions of India, it is a relevant resource which encompasses all the best practices that eye hospitals as well as healthcare setups can adopt to ensure safe service delivery across the country,” Dole said.
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