ISLAMABAD-The Ministry of National Health Services (NHS) on Wednesday declaring the Federal Government Services (FGS) Polyclinic Hospital and National Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine (NIRM) as green zone hospitals decided to open their Outpatients Departments (OPDs).

The documents available with The Nation said that both health facilities of the city will not admit the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) patients and the suspects reaching these hospitals will be referred to Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS).

Documents said that the OPDs at Polyclinic will be opened in phases while the NIRM OPDs will be functional in all strength from Wednesday.

However, the documents also revealed that soon after the opening of OPDs in FGSPC hospital, nine of its staff have been tested positive with the COVID-19. Official of the Ministry of NHS said that a representative of the ministry paid visit to both health facilities and it was agreed to open the FGSPC OPDs in phases while the NIRM OPDs fully, after both facilities have been declared green zone hospitals.

The visit report on FGSPC hospital available with The Nation said it was conveyed by Executive Director FGPC with great concern that nine health workers of FGPC have been confirmed COVID-19 positive in one day and it has dispelled a wave of panic among all the health workers, therefore great caution and care is required to open OPD in its full capacity.

It was agreed that opening may be carried out in phases. In first phase, medical OPD shall be opened which shall cater 2000-2500 patients per day approximately. It was also agreed that Gynae and Paeds OPD shall also be opened in first phase.

Emergency of all departments shall remain functional at full capacity. OPD shall start working from 03-06-2020 and remain open from 08:00 am to 02:00 pm.

It was also agreed that guidelines for OPDs shall be implemented in letter and spirit. Single entry point shall be observed for all OPD patients and screening of all patients shall be conducted at the entry point and symptomatic patients shall be referred to PIMS in ambulance of FGSPC.

It was agreed that FGSPC shall not cater to fresh patients of COVID-19. However, the fever clinic shall continue to work and symptomatic patients shall be referred to PIMS in ambulance of FGSPC after maintaining the contact details of patients.

These contact details shall be shared with DHO ICT for TTQ purpose. Currently, seven patients are admitted in isolation ward of FGSPC and after discharge of these patients the COVID-19 isolation ward of FGSPC shall cease to exist.

About NIRM, the visit report said that single entry point shall be observed for all OPD patients and screening of all patients shall be conducted at the entry points and symptomatic patients’ shall be referred to PIMS in ambulance of NIRM. Only one attendant shall be allowed to accompany the patient (if required) and only one patient shall be sent in waiting area of each OPD from auditorium.

OPD along with all other facilities shall be operational by 03-06-2020. OPD shall be operational from 08:00am to 02:00pm.

180 beds capacity of the hospital shall be operated at 90 beds to avoid crowding of the patients. Guidelines for OPD shall be circulated to all the health workers and it will be ensured that these guidelines are followed in letter and spirit.

Executive Director NIRM shall submit the evaluation report on soft opening of OPD and running NIRM as a green zone hospital in its full operational capacity in the next meeting.