Amma health checkup facility gathers pace

80 patients register daily.

Chennai: Since its launch at the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital on March 1, the Amma Master Health Checkup scheme has become an instant hit. Nearly 80 patients register themselves daily which points to the need for more cost effective, quality checkups in the city.

There has been a steady increase since its launch, said hospital sources, adding that over 500 patients have registered themselves till date. The Master Health Checkup came as a big relief to many who couldn’t afford such tests in private hospitals. “As soon as we heard about the new initiative, my husband, sister and I rushed to the hospital to register ourselves,” said Sridevi S.

The scheme is divided into packages as gold, diamond and platinum at a cost of Rs 1,000, Rs 2,000 and Rs 3,000. “Government hospitals in Tamil Nadu may be better than those in other states, including Kerala, in terms of their service and quality,” said G.R. Ravindranath, general secretary, Doctors’ Association for Social Equality.

“However, it has been seen that facilities for complex tests are still not common in most hospitals causing people to depend on private hospitals,” he said.

“The same tests elsewhere could prove to be very expensive. This master health checkup should be expanded to other hospitals as well,” said a senior health official. Though the centre is on the premises of a government hospital, enough care is given to keep the facility clean. “The ambience at the centre is like that of a corporate hospital. We have been provided with high end machines and we have round-the-clock staff to keep toilets clean,” said medical superintendent Sheela Rani.

“Most people queue up for the Amma platinum package as they can avail themselves a series of tests for just Rs 3,000. The centre tends to restrict the numbers to less than 100 a day to be able to pay more attention to patients, the official said. We ensure that the centre is free from crowds. In case, there are too many patients, other doctors from the hospital assist us,” said Kanagalakshmi, a staff.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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