Millennium Post

Health centres: Rural patients can avail treatment for cervical cancer via telemedicine consultations

KOLKATA: Patients from the remote parts of Bengal will soon be able to avail specialised treatment in various disciplines, including cervical cancer, lung issues, mental illness only through telemedicine consultations, video-calling and e-Prescriptions from the health and wellness centres, which have come up the districts.

Patients can be given high-end treatment without being shifted to the city hospitals. State Health department will create various pools with two to four districts falling under each pool. State Health department had already given emphasis on telemedicine services so that people in the remote areas can avail the health services from a distance. For the smooth implementation, the state government has already come up with robust infrastructure including opening up health and wellness centres in the villages. People are already getting treatment in many disciplines only through telemedicine consultations."If a patient from a far off area suffers from any ailments and wants to consult a specialized doctor in the city, he/she can do so only by sitting at a local health and wellness centre. People are already getting benefits of the scheme. Over 2,300 such centres have been set up in 28 districts. On an average ,around 26,000 people in the villages are already reaping the benefits each day," a senior Health official said.

He further stated that 1,728 more such centres are coming up with 350 additional doctors being inducted into the process within March this year as a result many more disciplines will be opened to the patients from the villages.

Treatment for cervical cancer, lung cancer and many other critical ailments will be made available. If there is any absence of doctors in a certain pool, the calls may be transferred to other pools immediately so that services are not affected.

"Tele-medicine facilities are coming up in a big way in the health wellness centres which will do the initial management of patients. Doctors have often suggested to us that if the initial management can be done through telemedicine many stroke patients and others do not require an admission in the city hospitals," said a top Health official. Incidentally, state Health Secretary Narayan Swaroop Nigam in July last year announced that said at least 15,000 health and wellness centres will be built in the next two years, where telemedicine services will be made available.

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