The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to start out door patient department (OPDs) exclusively for senior citizens. These OPDs will be at KEM Hospital, Parel, BYL Nair Hospital at Mumbai Central and LTMG Sion Hospital and will not only treat patients but help them with their other problems.
Dr SJ Nagda, director, major civic hospital, BMC said, “We are in the final stage of preparing a protocol for a senior citizens OPD. These specialised OPDs will be open soon at our three tertiary care hospitals.”
According to statistics available with the corporation, Mumbai has around 12 lakh senior citizens.
As the World Health Organisation urged the global medical community to reach out to the world’s aging population on World Health Day on Saturday, senior citizen population is struggling to receive decent health care. The BMC has made several promises to start specialised geriatric services in major hospitals but there exists only one, at KEM. This is despite the fact that 30-35 per cent of the OPD patient population at the tertiary BMC hospitals comprise elderly citizens.
“Unlike other patients, senior citizens have additional issues like social problems apart from the physical issues. It is important to treat each patient with respect and dignity. Our OPDs will aim to look into these problem also,”said Dr Nagda.
Doctors from the departments of Medicine and Preventive Social Medicine of the hospital will be trained to treat patients at the geriatric centres. Meanwhile, the BMC is yet to fulfil its promise of having a dedicated senior citizen helpline for the city.