Referral cases to resume after second lockdown ends

Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital will resume the referral cases once the situation in the country improves. So far the hospital has not referred any cases outside for treatment during the second lockdown.

Medical Superintended of JDWNRH Dr Gosar Pemba said the hospital has not received any severe cases which needed to be referred outside for treatment immediately during the second lockdown. However, if the case is emergency and if it’s a matter of life and death then the hospital has to refer the patient outside for treatment despite the lockdown.

Once the lockdown is lifted then the hospital will refer patients who needs treatment outside the country and they will be given COVID-19 vaccinations before being referred outside.

Every patient will be tested before being referred outside for treatment and if any patient tests positive then the hospital will not refer them. However, if patients test positive later after reaching outside for treatment, they will be kept in the isolation ward and after recovering the doctors there will start with the needed treatment. The government will bear the expenses of staying in the isolation ward.

The Liaison Officer of JDWNRH Pema said the last referral was on 18th December, 2020 and since then the hospital has not referred any cases outside for treatment. JDWNRH used to refer patients outside for treatment every week.

The first round of patients left for Kolkata in August 2020 and after that, the hospital has been managing to refer patients every month. Earlier, approximately 10 to 15 patients were referred in a week.

In 2018-2019, 695 patients were referred outside for treatment in Kolkata and Vellore. This is followed by 112 patients in Kolkata and 28 patients in Vellore in the year 2019-2020.

Only urgent cases are referred and not any regular cases. Usually the cases referred are cancer, heart disease, followed by bleeding in the brain similar to stroke. Before COVID-19, even those surgeries which can be done later were referred outside.

Meanwhile, Dr Gosar expressed happiness at receiving a less number of COVID-19 cases. He said the past few days, there has been zero cases detected which is good news and it is a big relief for health workers at JDWNRH. Their workload has also reduced.

As of 28th January there are less than 20 COVID-19 patients in the COVID ward in JDWNRH and all are stable and no patients are on ventilators or oxygen. The hospital will resume providing medical services according to the situation in Thimphu.

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