Hyderabad’s Basti Dawakhanas turn saviours during lockdown

Hyderabad’s Basti Dawakhanas turn saviours during lockdown

Hyderabad: B Ratan, a native of Kolkata working as a chef in a city hotel, developed a skin allergy and with most hospitals not having outpatient services, was clueless about where to go to get treated.

That is when his friend took him to a Basti Dawakhana at Phoolbagh, Basheerbagh on Monday, where he was offered treatment, besides medicines. All this for free.

During the current lockdown, Basti Dawakhanas are playing a crucial role in extending quality healthcare services and are also allaying the fears of many people, especially in slums and low income group colonies. A few people, who panicked after getting fever and cough, were among those at the Phoolbagh Dawakhana.

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Hyderabad’s Basti Dawakhanas turn saviours during lockdown
Hyderabad’s Basti Dawakhanas turn saviours during lockdown

The staff at all Basti Dawakhanas are checking the travel history of visitors, especially migrant workers and their close proximity with those returning from other States. In case there are any clear symptoms, such people are immediately sent to Gandhi Hospital or the Fever Hospital, she informs.

Basti Dawakhanas are working from 9 am to 5 pm and in a few areas, evening clinics are also being operated, depending on the demand from residents. Not all can afford to visit private hospitals and with no transportation, many are approaching the Basti Dawakhanas. More importantly, ASHA workers and Auxilary Nurse Midwives (ANMs) attached to the Urban Primary Health Centre (UPHC) are visiting migrant workers and construction workers’ camps and checking their health status, besides visiting slums and colonies.

“Going by the look of it, Basti Dawakhanas are on par with private clinics. Doctors and staff offer good service and it is all for free. During these lockdown days, they are infusing some confidence among residents through counselling,” says Rakesh, a visitor at the Begumpet Basti Dawakhana.

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Hyderabad’s Basti Dawakhanas turn saviours during lockdown
Hyderabad’s Basti Dawakhanas turn saviours during lockdown

At present, 124 Basti Dawakhanas are operational in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) limits covering Hyderabad, Medchal and Ranga Reddy districts. They are providing a package of services to the vulnerable population and are serving as the first point of contract between the community and the health system. They are attached to the nearest UPHC.

On an average, 70 to 80 persons are visiting a Basti Dawakhana every day. Many clinics are registering cases pertaining to cough, cold and even diarrhea. In tune with the cases, the staff at these clinics are stocking up medicines, including tablets, syrups, ointments etc.

This apart routine services like hyper tension checks, diabetes checks etc are being offered to the visitors. However, due to lockdown, availability of a few particular drugs is taking time as transportation of medicines is a challenge.

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Hyderabad’s Basti Dawakhanas turn saviours during lockdown
Hyderabad’s Basti Dawakhanas turn saviours during lockdown

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