The Goa Medical College (GMC) and Hospital, Bambolim, which has initiated few steps to improve services, is preparing to introduce an online booking system for doctors' appointments. A GMC official said an app will be developed to allow instant appointments. "Once the app is downloaded on your mobile, it would show which doctors are available for consultation on which days. Accordingly, a person can fix the appointment," he added. The online booking system, to be operated through a private agency, will ease management of the outpatient department (OPD) and patients and their family members would be saved from waiting in long queues. Though the proposal was mooted some time ago, it could not be executed due to funds crunch, which has now been taken care of, the official said.

The premier government-run hospital does not just receive patients from within the state, but also from districts of neighboring states. The GMC OPD sees about 1500-2000 patients on a daily basis of whom about 30 percent are from the neighboring states. The hospital has already opened separate counters for Goan and non-Goan patients and has also increased the registration fee for all patients. Earlier, treatment was free at the hospital. A GMC doctor said the hospital expects a rise in patient footfall once all super-specialty facilities become functional in the new block which has been proposed to come up on the GMC premises with funding from the center. – TOI

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