Soon, seek AIIMS appointments online

Soon, you will be able to book an appointment online at AIIMS. Though the system was officially launched some time back, the administration is still struggling to make the website operational.

Currently, the authorities are internally testing the system to overcome glitches. “We have not really advertised the online system yet for people to avail services through it. However, it is open and we are fine-tuning it. By next week, it should be fully operational,” said Dr Deepak Agarwal, Neurosurgeon and in-charge of the IT wing, AIIMS.

There is no substantial estimate of the traffic at the online booking system yet. “Efforts are on to make it more user-friendly,” said an official.

“It takes time for any system to be functional. It was launched around two weeks ago and will take a few more weeks to be fully operational,” said Dr Amit Gupta, spokesperson, AIIMS.     

The online booking is an effort to streamline the entire appointment procedure at AIIMS. But the traffic will not be any easy with patient overload and long waiting period at the hospital.

“Only a selective group of people will avail the online services or even the automated phone system. Perhaps only 1,000 of the daily 8,000 patients will make online bookings,” said Dr Agarwal.

The online booking system is, however, another step taken by the administration to do away with the alleged nexus of touts at the hospital. “The alleged nexus of mafias who facilitated patient bookings if they paid extra money can no longer thrive. Currently, the entire system has been computerised. This brings transparency and accountability to the system,” said a senior AIIMS official, requesting anonymity.

To book an appointment online, a patient needs to click on the “Patient Portal” option. A new patient will be given a temporary booking number along with the room number and doctor’s name, where the check-up will be conducted. The registration desk will give the patient the unique health identification number when the patient shows up with a print-out on the day of the check-up. Old patients can directly log on with their UHID at the portal.

Recently, the AIIMS had launched the interactive voice response system where patients can call up to seek appointments. The authorities are receiving 2,000-5,000 calls daily. The service has been extended for eye care as well.

In the next one month, the AIIMS will also initiate two more online services.

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