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Chandigarh: Requests for elective surgeries increase at private hospitals

With the daily Covid-19 cases dipping after the second wave of the pandemic abates, the private hospitals in the tricity of Chandigarh, Panchkula and Mohali are witnessing a huge rush of patients for elective surgeries.

Elective surgery is a procedure scheduled in advance because it does not involve a medical emergency.

Even though international travel for medical tourism has resumed in India, not many foreign patients are approaching the tricity’s private hospitals for availing non-Covid medical facilities. However, the hospitals are trying to make up for the losses faced during the pandemic as the footfall of patients from other states has increased for non-Covid elective surgeries.

Representatives of private hospitals believe that with the second wave flattening, this is the right time to provide treatment to patients with pending surgeries as further delay may deteriorate their health conditions and elective surgeries could turn into emergencies.

A spokesperson of Max Super Specialty Hospital, Mohali, informed that the elective surgeries had dipped to around 70% during the Covid situation, but now when the surge had abated, the hospital was providing treatment to 20% more than the normal number of patients. The demand for elective surgeries had suddenly increased, however the footfall of international patients had not picked up pace yet.

Elective surgeries resumed after govt guidelines
A spokesperson of Fortis Hospital, Mohali, said, “During the first wave, all elective surgeries and procedures were put on hold. While the emergency surgeries remained inevitable even during the peak of the pandemic, Fortis soon resumed elective surgeries after government guidelines. Our experts have performed over 10,000 emergency and elective surgeries for cardiac, neuro, cancer, orthopaedic and other specialties during the pandemic.”

The hospital authorities added that during the pandemic, the hospital occupancy had dropped and elective procedures had come to a standstill. In addition, the Covid treatment was fixed at the rates defined by the government, which were either zero or at negative margins. “Fortis hospital had dedicated 150 beds for Covid-19 patients. But now when the cases are dipping, many patients are approaching the hospital to get their non-Covid elective surgeries done,” they said.

Dr PS Maan, medical superintendent of the Alchemist Hospital in Panchkula, said, “During the Covid situation, the hospital was doing less than 50% of its routine work and elective surgeries had dipped drastically. However, we are getting a huge response from patients now and we are back on our normal track.”

Meanwhile, Dr RS Bedi, who runs the Bedi Hospital in Chandigarh and is the former national vice-president of the Indian Medical Association, said that not only big corporate hospitals, but private clinics were also witnessing a huge demand of patients.

“Since Covid cases have dropped in the tricity, this is the only time to provide medical facilities to non-Covid patients as they are more prone to getting infected with the virus in the possible third wave. The demand for elective surgeries has gone up since June this year, after the peak of the second wave started to flatten. Also, people have now resumed attending out-patient departments of private hospitals and clinics, which is a positive sign for the private sector,” Dr Bedi said. Hindustan Times