The proposed evening outpatient (OP) clinics in Government Medical College Hospitals (MCHs) will begin functioning from Saturday, Health Minister V.S. Sivakumar has said. The government had decided to start evening OP clinics at MCHs and taluk, district, and general hospitals in view of the fever epidemic in the State.
Mr. Sivakumar said all diagnostic tests required for fever patients would be done free of cost in government laboratories and necessary directions to this effect had been issued. More fever wards would be opened in hospitals, he said.
Dedicated wards with ICU facility would be opened for patients with severe dengue fever (category C) as they require special monitoring and care, unlike patients who might have mild or moderate form of dengue (categories A and B) which could be managed well with proper supportive treatment
Though the Kerala Government Medical College Teachers’ Association (KGMCTA) had earlier taken a stand that evening clinics were not feasible as there were too many inpatients who needed close monitoring and follow-up, on Friday they said that they would cooperate to run evening clinics.
KGMCTA president K. Mohanan said that medical college doctors had initially refused to start evening clinics as they believed that they were expected to run OP clinics as was done in periphery hospitals. OP clinics at MCHs will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., while in other government hospitals, it will function from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. On Friday, 17,952 fever patients sought treatment in the OP clinics, out of whom 828 were admitted in various hospitals. Though there were 461 suspected dengue cases, only 75 were confirmed as dengue.
One confirmed and six suspected dengue deaths were reported on Friday, from Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Kottayam, and Idukki. One death was reported from Pathanamthitta due to leptospirosis, taking the total deaths to seven on Friday.
Of the 75 cases of confirmed dengue, 42 were from Thiruvananthapuram, nine from Idukki, eight from Kollam, and five from Kozhikode. Two cases of Chikungunya were reported from Ernakulam and one more case of H1N1 was reported from Kozhikode