Long wait for those seeking home delivery of medicines

Helpline numbers remain busy; only few receive orders

Long wait for those seeking home delivery of medicines

Residents queue up to buy medicines at a medical store in Bathinda on Thursday. Pawan Sharma

Sameer Singh

Tribune News Service

Bathinda, March 26

City residents wanting to purchase medicines had a harrowing experience in many parts of the city on Thursday. They rued that the helpline numbers provided by the district administration remained engaged for most of the day. Many of those who managed to place orders said they did not receive medicines.

The district administration has started home delivery of medicines during the period of the curfew. People can place orders on given helpline numbers by sending prescription via WhatsApp. The orders will be home delivered by police personnel.

Ramandeep, a resident of Partap Nagar, said: “A few weeks ago, I underwent an eye treatment, after which the doctor recommended some medicines to be taken on a daily basis. I placed an order on Wednesday evening but didn’t receive it even today (Thursday). Finally, I had to go out to purchase medicines from a nearby clinic.”

Vicky, another city resident, said: “I placed an order at 11:30 am and haven’t received medicines till 4 pm. My mother was operated upon past week at a private hospital and there are still marks of stitches on her head. I kept calling on the helpline number for delivery of medicines and could not muster up the courage to go out to buy medicines after watching videos of police personnel punishing residents ruthlessly.”

Residents said the administration must increase the number of helpline numbers so that they do not have to bear with endless wait.

Meanwhile, a meeting was held the by district administration on Thursday to streamline the delivery of medicines. Drug Inspector Ramandeep Gupta said: “Besides the home delivery of medicines, 20 mobile vans carrying essential drugs would move around in the city to provide medicines upfront. There is also a plan to increase the number of delivery persons.”

On being questioned how a few chemist shops remained opened in the city and sold medicines to residents standing in queues, Ramandeep said: “No chemist shop would be allowed to remain open. There are rumours on the social media that some shops remained open but these are baseless. We have got all those shops shut which were selling medicines on Thursday.”

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