The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has released a set of new standard treatment guidelines for 54 common conditions across 11 specialities for use by physicians at all levels of public health care. The volume III of the ‘Standard Treatment Workflows’ seeks to address problems associated with irrational use of medicines, over and under diagnosis and poor referral practices, among others.
Dr Vinod K Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog, released the book ICMR Standard Treatment Workflows – Volume III pertaining to 54 conditions under 11 specialities and also a mobile app on Tuesday, an ICMR statement said on Wednesday.On this occasion, Prof (Dr) Balram Bhargava, Secretary, DHR, and Director General, ICMR, said, “The burden of delivering healthcare at the peripheries predominantly rests on primary care physicians who have been doing a phenomenal job. The Standard Treatment Workflows will help these physicians to remain updated and will provide broad guidance on how to manage common conditions” Paul said the use of Standard Treatment Workflows (STWs) needs to be examined in an operational research mode and at various levels of public healthcare system.
A robust dissemination strategy, including international dissemination, involving various stakeholders needs to be planned, he added.The ICMR released volume I with 53 conditions in 2019 and volume II with 18 conditions exclusively focused on tuberculosis in March this year. With growing new scientific evidence and rising healthcare costs, the healthcare providers regularly require simple standard treatment guidelines, workflows and reference manuals. The latest STWs will help in implementing it effectively at all levels with focus on quality health care, the statement stated.
Dr Lokesh Sharma, senior scientist at ICMR, said, “Developing STW is a mission mode project of Indian Council of Medical Research for common and serious diseases encountered by the treating physicians at all levels of healthcare systems with an aim to guide them for management and encourage rational use of drugs, diagnostics and other healthcare services.” “It is expected that these resource stratified treatment workflows would be useful to doctors working at primary, secondary as well as tertiary levels and help in optimal utilisation of resources,” he said.
Sharma said it will help towards attainment of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) as the Indian healthcare system is gearing up by initiating several schemes like National Health Protection Scheme, Ayushman Bharat, Nutrition Supplementation Scheme, Inderdhanush Scheme etc.Specialties such as dermatology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, general surgery, sickle cell disease, neonatology, oncology, ophthalmology, orthopaedics, female infertility, paediatric surgery had been covered in STW Volume III, he said.