Tribune News Service
Bathinda, December 23
After several hiccups, the most coveted project for people of the region, All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Bathinda, was inaugurated with huge fanfare on Monday. Initially, the outpatient department (OPD) services in 12 specialty units will be providing medical services. Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, presided over the event as the chief guest.
The AIIMS Bathinda was approved under Phase V of the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY) of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, in July, 2016. The cost of the project is Rs925 crore which will be completed by June 2020.
Initially, people from the region would be able to avail medical services (OPD) in orthopaedic, general surgery including surgical oncology and urologist pediatric surgery consultation, general medicine, ENT, ophthalmology, psychiatry, dermatology, obstetrics and gynaecology , dental, radiology x-ray ultrasound and colour Doppler basic biochemistry and basic haematology tests services have been started in AIIMS Bathinda from Monday.
All OPDs will work from 9 am onwards and registration window will be open from 8 am to 11 am. Facilities of pathology microbiology and chemotherapy will be added very soon. There is also a provision of providing medicines through Affordable Medicines and Reliable Implants for Treatment (AMRIT) drug store on concessional rates.
Speaking on the occasion, Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Union Food Processing Industries Minister said, “Apart from providing quality medical services, AIIMS Bathinda would also be instrumental in conducting extensive research to improve the quality of medical services. The move would provide impetus to medical tourism and would also assist in turning the state into education and industrial hub.”
Badal said, “Initially the OPD services would be equipped to handle around 1,000 patients every day and that this would be increased in due course to handle 5,000 patients daily.”
Talking to The Tribune, Dr Sameer Aggarwal, nodal officer, AIIMS Bathinda, said, “Our next focus would be introduce medical college under AIIMS in Bathinda itself and later super speciality units, indoor patient department (for admitting patients) and operation theatres would also be introduced. Currently, we have 52 doctors who have joined at the Bathinda AIIMS.
Dr Vipan Kaushal from PGI said, “As many as 12 patients were examined on first day of the OPD services at AIIMS Bathinda. Since inaugural function was scheduled in afternoon, registration was done on trial-run basis but from Tuesday onwards OPD services will cater to patients on full-fledged basis.”
Will be a game changer: Association of Physicians
Members of the Association of Physicians of India (API), Malwa branch, hailed the opening of the outpatient department (OPD) services at AIIMS Bathinda and stated that it would prove to be a game changer for providing affordable and world-class medical services and medical education in the region.
Dr Vitull K Gupta, executive member of the API and a human rights activist, congratulated Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Union Minister and MP from Bathinda, for bringing the project to Bathinda. The doctor said along with opening of AIIMS, there was an urgent need for strengthening already existing government medical colleges, Primary Mealth Centres, Civil Hospitals and basic infrastructure which was lacking in the state, adding that, “It is advisable to rekindle the already existing infrastructure to provide universal, affordable and equitable health care to the people.”
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