Post-COVID grid-style health management system proposed

Ke Jiayun
Local political advisers have proposed grid-style health management and a hierarchical treatment system in the post-pandemic recovery era at the city's annual two sessions.
Ke Jiayun

Local political advisers have proposed grid-style health management and a hierarchical treatment system in the post-pandemic recovery era at the city's ongoing annual two sessions.

Local Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference member Li Xianhua pointed out several problems during the recent peak of COVID-19 infections in Shanghai.

"The patients have had to go to hospital by themselves for treatment," Li told Shanghai Daily. "It will be much better if they were able to solve their health problems at home or in their community."

She mentioned that facing the infection peak, Shanghai has done well with actions like setting up computerized tomography (CT) machines at some community health centers.

"But there is still progress to be made. We can provide some solutions on residents' health management in advance. For instance, having family doctors give them some guidance, so that they won't be panic and rush to hospital, which may cause congestion at hospitals."

According to Li, during this period, she also noticed that people often preferred large 3A hospitals to community health centers because they believe that they can get better treatment there. So such hospitals are always crowded while the health centers passively wait for patients to come, even though some of their medical resources and treatment methods such as infusion are the same.

Elderly people need their family members to accompany them to hospital so those living alone have difficulties in getting treatment, Li said in her proposal.

She suggested that the government divide the city into grids and have community health centers manage residents' health condition in the grid they are responsible for.

If residents fall sick, the community centers can give guidance through calls or dispatching medics to their homes to evaluate their health condition.

These centers can lend medical equipment like oxygenators to residents for free and provide some basic things like the antigen detection kits.

If patients' condition gets worse, the centers can arrange ambulance to send them to superior medical institutions.

Another proposal made by political advisers Xie Guoqun and Zhu Dong also noted the significance of the hierarchical treatment system during the infection peak.

Although Shanghai has already launched a "1+1+1" family doctor signing system, it hasn't be implemented well due to problems like the heavy workload and because the service cannot meet patients' requirements.

And the informatization hasn't helped the hierarchical treatment system much in the absence of a sharing platform, they said.

The duo suggested that more promotion should be done among both medical workers and residents to change their ideas and make them aware of hierarchical treatment and large hospitals should set up centers to provide guidance on community-level medical care.

More medical professionals should be trained using advanced digitalized means, they added.

The annual session of the Shanghai Committee of the CPPCC began on Tuesday while the first session of the 16th Shanghai People's Congress opened on Wednesday. They are jointly called the annual two sessions.

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