Expansion and Innovation at Army Hospital (Research & Referral): A New Era in Medical Infrastructure

New Delhi: The Army Hospital (Research & Referral) (AHRR), a cornerstone of the Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS), is set to embark on a significant expansion with the establishment of three new state-of-the-art medical centers. These centers, dedicated to oncology, ophthalmology, and orthopedic & joint replacement, are expected to revolutionize the hospital’s infrastructure and the quality of medical services it offers.

Located on a sprawling 256-acre campus in Delhi, the AHRR has been a beacon of medical excellence since the late 1990s. With a capacity of 1200 beds, it serves as a quaternary care facility, providing advanced treatment to patients referred from tertiary or similar-level hospitals. Lt Gen Ajith Nilakantan, Commandant of AHRR, recently shared these exciting developments during an interaction with a group of media personnel.

Enhancing Medical Infrastructure

“No hospital can be updated and remain relevant if it doesn’t expand and keep in touch with the latest advances in technology and facilities,” remarked Lt Gen Nilakantan. This philosophy underpins the construction of the three new centers.

  • Oncology Centre: This center will be equipped with the latest technology to provide comprehensive cancer care.
  • Ophthalmology Centre: This facility aims to offer cutting-edge eye care services, enhancing the hospital’s capabilities in treating a wide range of ocular conditions.
  • Orthopedic & Joint Replacement Centre: This center will focus on advanced orthopedic treatments and joint replacement surgeries, providing state-of-the-art care for patients with musculoskeletal issues.

The construction of these centers is expected to be completed within the next one to two years, significantly boosting the hospital’s infrastructure and expanding the range of services available to patients.

**EDS: TO GO WITH STORY, SCREENSHOT VIA PTI VIDEOS** New Delhi: Lt Gen Ajith Nilakantan, Commandant, Army Hospital (Research & Referral) during a media interaction, in New Delhi, Saturday, June 22, 2024. (PTI Photo)(PTI06_22_2024_000413B)

Pioneering Skin Bank Facility

In addition to these expansions, AHRR recently inaugurated a skin bank facility within its Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. This facility, formally opened by DGMS (Army) Lt Gen Arindam Chatterjee, received its first skin donation on May 29. The donor was the mother of an army personnel who passed away at AHRR. This skin bank is a first for the AFMS and one of the few such facilities in the country, primarily catering to patients with severe burns.

“It is very important to cover the exposed area and sometimes adequate skin may not be available with the same patient. So, we may have to take skin from somebody else and use it for an initial period until the base skin comes back,” explained Lt Gen Nilakantan. The skin bank will serve as a centralized hub for the collection, processing, storage, and distribution of skin grafts, providing a critical resource for military medical centers across the country.

Comprehensive Medical Services

AHRR boasts all the broad specialties and super specialties, totaling 35 departments, including liver and heart transplant procedures. The hospital employs approximately 300 doctors, 300 nursing officers, and nearly 1,000 outsourced paramedical staff, alongside 300 defense civilians.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, AHRR ensured the continuity of treatment for all diseases while managing COVID-19 cases. “We endeavored to make sure that while we treated COVID-19, we also did not stop treatment of other diseases,” Lt Gen Nilakantan noted. This approach ensured that the hospital remained fully functional, providing comprehensive care even during the pandemic’s peak.

A Future-Ready Medical Institution

The ongoing expansions and the addition of cutting-edge facilities underscore AHRR’s commitment to staying at the forefront of medical innovation. With the establishment of the new centers and the skin bank, AHRR is poised to enhance its service offerings significantly, ensuring that it remains a leading medical institution within the AFMS and beyond.

As AHRR continues to grow and evolve, it remains dedicated to providing exceptional medical care to its patients, continually adapting to meet the challenges of modern healthcare. The upcoming expansions and innovations are a testament to its unwavering commitment to excellence in medical service.

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