Jigme Dorji National Referral Hospital (JDWNRH) observed its first foundation day on 2 May coinciding with the Birth Anniversary of the Third Druk Gyalpo. The occasion was graced by Her Majesty The Gyaltsuen Jetsun Pema Wangchuck.
14 health staff, including doctors, nurses, supporting staff and technicians, received ‘the employee of the year award’ from Her Majesty the Gyaltsuen during the occasion. The recipients are; General Duties Medical Officer (GDMO) Jangchu Choden, Clinical Nurse Sonam Jamtsho, X-Ray Technician Nar Brd Dumgen, Ambulance Driver Sarbajit Chettri, Ward Girl Sangay Chezom, Senior Receptionist Tandin Wangmo and Deputy Nursing Superintendent Tshering Dema.
Senior Administrative Assistant Dorji Lhamo, Community Health Specialist Dr Sonam Ugen, Pediatrician Dr Meme Lhamu Mynak, Senior ICT Officer Peldon, Senior Staff Nurse Wang Chhozom, Senior X-Ray Technician Tandin Dorji and Ward Boy Buddha Mani Timsina.
The awards have helped in boosting the morale and motivation of the staff. In addition, token of appreciation, in the form of a citations, were given to the donors and volunteers of the hospital. JDWNRH organized a series of activities in the last five months mainly to provide the necessary motivation to the 1,300 staff members.
President of JDWNRH, Lhab Dorji, said the day is a tribute to the Father of the Nation, the Third Druk Gyalpo Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, who secured a place for Bhutan in the world by ensuring the sovereignty and integrity of Bhutan, and spearheading the country towards modernization.
“More importantly, to remind ourselves that we have a huge responsibility to fulfill the aspirations of His Majesty the King, to provide quality patient care to the people of Bhutan,” he added.
The first hospital was established 62 years ago, in 1956, in Langjophakha, Thimphu. Later in 1974, the hospital was shifted to the present location and named Thimphu General hospital.
“With rapid development, the need for expansion of healthcare services for the people led to the introduction of new specialized services, and in 2002, the hospital was renamed JDWNRH in honour of His Majesty the Third Druk Gyalpo Jigme Dorji Wangchuck,” President, JDWNRH added.
Specialized services like, neurosurgery, urological services, cancer surgeries, adult, pediatric, and neonatal intensive care are given in the national referral hospital. Also, diagnostic services such as, CT scan, MRI, Echocardiography, and advanced laboratory are available.
“We have been able to introduce Inter-Uterine Insemination, Epidural Labour Analgesia, Radiation services, Renal Clinics, Forensic Toxicology services, and the Bhutan Emergency Aeromedical Retrieval services, to name a few,” Lhab Dorji said.
JDWNRH is now expanding its infrastructure and services with the construction of the 150 bedded Gyaltsuen Jetsun Pema Wangchuck Mother and Child Hospital, the Gyalyum Kesang Choden Wangchuck National Eye Center, an additional hospital wing, construction of an administration building, and the creation of the Oncology and Palliative care ward.
The hospital also expanded its emergency department, epidural ward, and the addition of the 22 bedded dialysis center built by His Majesty’s Kidu Medical Unit.
“Such huge investments illustrates that the Royal Government is according the highest priority in providing the best healthcare to our people,” said the President of JDWNRH, and further added that the hospital is collaborating with other hospitals in India, Thailand, and Singapore to improve the service standards, introduce new services, and to train the staff.
There are plans to introduce more specialized services in the 12th Five Year Plan which includes a kidney transplant, cath-lab services, pace maker program, mammography, joint replacement, dental implantation, cochlear implant, and a sleep study program.
Meanwhile, highlighting some of the statistics, JDWNRH President said that they are managing 368 beds at the moment with an occupancy rate of 74 percent. In 2017, the OPD attendance was 500,000 plus and 17,468 patients were admitted for treatment in the hospital.
The hospital in 2017 helped deliver 4,553 babies and performed 1,283 caesarean sections. “We also carried out 8,894 surgeries, performed 4.1 million lab tests, did 35,364 X-rays, performed 25,975 ultrasound examinations, 3,408 endoscopies and did 3,071 colonoscopies,” he said.
Similarly in the same year 5,809 CT scans were performed, along with 3,472 MRIs. 3,900 units of blood were collected, 26,646 emergencies cases were attended to, community health services to 78,548 patients were made.
JDWNRH is also the teaching hospital for the Khesar Gyalpo University of Medical Sciences, and is actively involved in the training of nursing students, training of intern doctors. In the last 4 years, the hospital is training resident doctors who will be passing out as specialist doctors in July.