After witnessing huge success of ‘Outpatient Opioid Assisted Treatment Clinics’ across the state, the State Government has now established 10 OOAT Clinics in the Amritsar district where 4780 patients suffering from drug addiction are being provided free treatment. Giving details, the Deputy Commissioner Kamaldeep Singh Sangha said that to provide health care services and treatment to drug dependent persons at the village level, the health department has set up 10 OOAT clinics in the district, where patient suffering from any drug addiction would get the treatment without having been admitted to hospital. He said that concerned authorities are strictly instructed to ensure, functioning of clinics and centres as per Standard Operating Protocol and mark daily attendance of persons visiting these centres.Divulging about the availability of essential medicines and free tests at the centres, he said that all medicines are available in plenty in de- addiction centres and OOAT clinics. He said that facility of tests are also being provide free of cost in the hospitals to which the government de-addiction centres have been attached.
He said that it is a fact that patient registration has increased in OOAT clinics and OOAT is becoming more preferred mode of treatment because it is OPD based and absolutely free. He said the average registration of all OOAT clinics of state has increased from 70 new patients per day in June to 408 new patients per day in July.The number is expected to go up substantially over the next two weeks. He said that at present, 118 clinics are functional in the state.He said that capacity building training was being imparted to the teams which would comprise of Medical Officer, Pharmacist, Staff Nurse and data entry operator to conduct proper treatment of addicts at CHC level.He further said that OOAT Clinic is an OPD based clinic. The department followed the need based approach that required people only with severe problem to be admitted in the indoor facilities and most of the people can be treated in OPD Facility.“The psychiatrist of the district is the overall in-charge for the OOAT clinic and department has already trained the Medical officers, Counselors, Staff Nurses and Data Entry Operators from all the districts for smooth running of these OOAT Clinics,” he added.