Bhubaneswar: Taking into account the complaints received by family members of patients at COVID treatment facilities across the State, the Health and Family Welfare Department has made fully functional helpdesks mandatory.
An order by Additional Chief Secretary (Health) Pradipta Mohapatra today read, “After careful examination of the matter, the Government stipulated the following guidelines for establishing the dedicated Help Desk in each Covid-19 facility with immediate effect.
- Each Covid-19 facility (Both Government and Private) shall mandatorily establish a dedicated Help Desk to function 24 x 7. The help desk must have a dedicated telephone preferably a toll free number.
- The toll-free help line number of the help desk must be intimated to the State Level Authorized Officer i.e. Additional DMET, Odisha (Dr Umakant Satpathy) Mobile: 9437410842.
- The toll-free numbers of all Covid-19 Facilities shall be widely notified to the public.
- The help desk shall be manned with sufficient HR so as to attend all calls round the clock in shift manner.
- The help desk apart from telephonic communication shall also use the social media like Whats App etc. to communicate the voice and pictures of the patient to the attendants of the patient.
- A dedicated conference room may be set up at the outside of the Covid-19 Facility with provision of TV and Cameras which can be connected with CCTVs installed inside the facilities so that the attendant can see his patient and talk with him / her.
- Steps shall be taken to collect and record the contact numbers of the patient at the time of admission and even if not inquired by the attendant of the patient. A general information of the condition of the patient shall be communicated as a SMS or Whats App message to the attendant of the patient every day at least once.
- The Authorized Medical Officer and the Authorized Person shall ensure the establishment of help desk within a limited time of one week and intimate the helpline number to the State Level Authorized Officer.
- The AMO as well as AP shall also ensure the proper functioning of the help desk. In case of any complain regarding the non-response of the help desk to the query / help needed over the telephone, the AMO / AP shall take necessary steps to respond to the call immediately.
- For any violation of the above provisions and non-functioning of the help desk, necessary action as deemed fit shall be initiated against the erring hospital.
“As the compliance of the help desk is directly related to the overall satisfaction of the patient as well as the attendants, non-compliance of the same shall be seriously viewed and shall be considered as negligence in duty for the concerned patient. The claim of the hospital for the same patient shall be withheld. Such matter shall be decided by the Technical Committee after receiving a written complaint from the appellant and approval of Government,” the order further read.