CHANDIGARH: For the first time in Punjab, the people availing treatment at Outpatient Opioid Assisted Treatment (OOAT) clinics will be tracked online courtesy Unique Identification Numbers (UIDs) issued to them.
Health and Family Welfare Minister Brahm Mohindra said any patient suffering from drug addiction and not willing for indoor admission may get daily dose of medicine from OOAT clinics.
The OOAT programme was implemented as a pilot project in Moga, Taran Taran and Amritsar on October 26, 2017. Later, the scheme was launched throughout the state on May 17.
About 81 such clinics are functioning in the state. Till date, more than 8,459 patients have been registered and availing medical services. Patient retention rate currently is 84.05 per cent.
Mohindra said the central registry for online tracking of patients was implemented in Punjab. "Patients may take medicine from any OOAT clinic and every patient is provided with UID number so that he may take his daily dose from a single clinic. This will help avoid duplicity, he said, adding that counselling services were also being provided at these clinics.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Amarinder Singh urged Punjabi comedians Jaswinder Bhalla, Karamjit Anmol and Bal Mukund Sharma to use their popularity for spreading awareness regarding the ill-effects of drug abuse.
The popular artistes with huge fan base could help in changing the people's perception towards the fight against drug abuse, he asserted.