Hyderabad: Encouraged by the success of Basthi Dawakhanas in urban centres, the State government has decided to rebrand the existing Rural Health and Wellness Centres into Palle Dawakhanas across Telangana. To ensure Palle Dawakhanas maintain the same quality healthcare services that are available in their urban counterparts, the State government has also permitted the Health Department to fill vacancies and recruit 1,677 MBBS doctors as medical officers in the State.
The medical officers, who were earlier known as Midlevel Health Providers at Rural Health and Wellness Centres, will ensure patients in the rural areas have round-the-clock access to a doctor at all the Palle Dawakhanas. The recruitment of medical officers is expected to be completed by October-end.
The focus of Palle Dawakhanas will be to deliver comprehensive primary healthcare services to the local population. Such unique healthcare facilities will bring comprehensive healthcare facilities closer to the homes of people, covering maternal and child health services and non-communicable diseases (NCDs), including free essential drugs and diagnostic services.
The Palle Dawakhanas will deliver and expand the range of services to address the primary healthcare needs of the entire population in the local area and will stock medicines for common ailments and have a fully-equipped laboratory to conduct basic diagnostic tests.
The concept will also have tele-consultation facility to enable patients have access to remote consultation with specialists from government tertiary healthcare facilities, equipped with bio-medical waste disposable systems and other vital infrastructures like power back-up and an internet connection.
Such facilities will also focus on health promotion and prevention, which is aimed at encouraging individuals in rural communities to adopt healthy behaviour and make changes and reduce the risk of developing chronic disease and morbidity, senior health officials said.
At present, the Health Department is looking to establish anywhere between 600 and 650 Palle Dawakhanas across Telangana in a phased manner. As of March 2019, the existing rural wellness centres in Telangana already have 269 women healthcare workers (Auxiliary Nurse Midwives) and about 180 medical officers. The Palle Dawakhanas will be linked to higher-level government diagnostic facilities developed under the under T-Diagnostics initiative and District Hospitals for referral and treatment purposes, officials said.
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