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Mumbai: BMC to start clinics in shipping containers by Independence Day

Updated on: 05 July,2022 08:05 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Suraj Pandey | suraj.pandey@mid-day.com

It aims to start with 15 such clinics and 13 HBT polyclinics; there will be tie-ups with diagnostic centres to refer patients for CT scan, MRI, mammography, sonography, etc

Mumbai: BMC to start clinics in shipping containers by Independence Day

The BMC plans to start the Hinduhriday Samrat Balasaheb Thackeray (HBT) Healthcare Centres in such containers. Representation pic

The city will now get clinics in shipping containers under a new civic health scheme. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will have 70 such clinics under the revised Hinduhriday Samrat Balasaheb Thackeray (HBT) Healthcare Centre scheme that was announced in its budget. These container clinics, which are being mapped ward wise, will treat minor illnesses like fever, cough, and cold. To start with, the BMC aims to have 15 HBT clinics by Independence Day.

To lower the burden of peripheral and tertiary care hospitals, the BMC had announced HBT centres that aim to provide treatment to patients near their houses. BMC’s Executive Health Officer Dr Mangala Gomare said, “HBT clinics that will be directly connected to the community will be started in the slum areas. As of now, we are planning to have a total of 70 clinics in a phase-wise manner. We have identified spots where these containers will be placed and turned into clinics. Along with that existing clinics—primary health centres—will also be converted into HBT clinics. The BMC has also identified 13 civic dispensaries (with area more than 2,000 sq feet) which will be converted into HBT polyclinics.”

She further added, “By August 15, we plan to start at least 10 to 15 HBT clinics and 13 polyclinics. This will boost the health infrastructure in the city and people will get health facilities at no or minimal cost.”

Paperless and free

Dr Gomare said, “We are mapping the spaces and the need for these HBT clinics across the city. The good thing is that the whole treatment documentation process will be paperless and free of cost. We will give a tab to each clinic in which they will feed details and the history of patients. We will give them medicines for common ailments. There will be four people, i.e  a doctor, a nurse, a pharmacist, and a multipurpose worker, at each clinic.”

Usually, patients have to pay Rs 10 for OPD documents and R50 for aplichikitsa for several blood tests, but in the HBT clinics, they will be free.

Referral centres for diseases

The HBT clinic will handle common ailments but if the problem is a bit severe and needs the expertise of a gynecologist or paediatrician, MD medicine, dermatologist, cardiologist, etc then patients will be referred to the nearest HBT polyclinic. 

These polyclinics will have specialists like paediatricians, gynaecologists, chest physicians, orthopaedic specialists, dentists, skin specialists, etc.

A BMC official said, “We have issued expressions of interest and more than 100 doctors have shown interest. We are shortlisting them. We are going to have tie-ups with diagnostic centres through which we can refer patients for CT scan, MRI, mammography, sonography, etc. Most probably all these investigations will be done at the rate of BMC hospitals while the facility of experts will be available free of cost.”

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