With an aim to provide healthcare services on the go, the Delhi government is set to start mohalla clinics at some Metro stations, bus stands and at sabzi mandis. This is in line with the AAP government’s plan to start 1,000 such clinics in the city by the end of December.
The city now has around 200 mohalla clinics, but not a single one at any Metro station. Now, three clinics will come up at Metro stations; five at sabzi mandis in Azadpur, Ghazipur, Narela, Najafgarh and Okhla; and three at ISBTs in Anand Vihar, Kashmere Gate and Sarai Kale Khan.
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will inaugurate 100 new clinics Saturday. The announcement of 1,000 clinics by the Delhi government dates back to 2015, and with Assembly elections approaching in the capital, the government hopes to pick up pace to meet the ambitious deadline.
“With the addition of these 100 new clinics, Delhi will have around 300 primary health centres. This itself sets a new record. No government in any country has been able to set up 300 new primary centres in their rule of five years. And even after this, we will keep up with the pace to offer doorstep delivery of healthcare services to the people of Delhi,” said Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain Friday.
As many as 1.69 crore patients have availed services from the health centres, and on an average, around 35,000-40,000 patients visit the clinics every day. While the government had hoped the clinics would relieve the burden from overloaded government hospitals, Jain said this had not happened.
“Of the patients visiting mohalla clinics, around 75% are those who are availing treatment from a government-run centre for the first time. So the load on hospitals is still the same. This is also because of the fact that the government is providing free medicines and tests to patients. The concept of mohalla clinics will make Delhi quack-free. Many patients who used to go to these quacks are now approaching government centres,” he said.
As reported by The Indian Express on October 14, the government has also tweaked the rent and area requirements for those willing to give their properties on rent for such clinics.