CHENNAI: With active Covid cases less than 1,500 and steady decline in daily cases, the number of patients visiting outpatient departments at government hospitals in the city is steadily increasing. In April as Covid cases were increasing, the Director of Medical Education Dr R Narayana Babu had instructed the hospitals to cut down on elective surgeries, including cosmetic surgeries till the situation improved. He had instructed hospitals to give priority to emergency and life saving surgeries.
On Tuesday, the doctors said non-emergency services resumed in full swing. “We had cut down on non-emergency services, but now have resumed all non-elective surgeries and non-emergency services. As bus services resumed, patients have started coming in large numbers. The hospital on Tuesday treated around 5,000 outpatients,” said Dr P Balaji, Dean, Government Stanley Medical College Hospital.
Dr Balaji also said after Covid cases began dropping, the hospital started modifying three blocks which were converted as Covid blocks to treat non-Covid cases. The hospital on Tuesday had 317 Covid patients on admission and has cut down beds from 2,500 to 1,500.
Dr E Theranirajan, Dean, Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital said, “We never stopped the non-emergency services fully. The outpatient cases during peak Covid time was around 4,000 per day, but now has increased to around 7,000.”
Dr Theranirajan said the hospital on Tuesday had 334 Covid patients and the reserved Tower III block for Covid treatment will remain as Covid block. Meanwhile, Dr R Shanthimalar, Dean, Government Kilpauk Medical College Hospital said, the hospital has 150 Covid patients and the hospital will resume non elective surgeries and non-Covid services in full swing from the first week of July.
“We are repairing blocks that are vacant after Covid cases have come down. We are prepared in case of a surge. People are coming for non-Covid treatment, but we haven’t started treating all non-Covid cases fully yet,” said Dr Shanthimalar.