The dental department at the Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital started giving its services from its new location in Taba starting this week. The structure, which previously housed the National COVID-19 Hospital, started providing general dental services as of now. However, the department will be completely set up by the end of next week. It is being moved to decongest the national referral hospital.
The new location of the dental department is above the Taba-Dechencholing Highway and below Taba Lower Secondary School. The hospital is in the process of setting up all the equipment for specialist services.
“As of now, the specialist services are still on hold. We are going to start providing full specialist services after the 20th of May,” said Kuenzang Wangdi, the officiating medical superintendent of the national referral hospital.
Currently, it provides consultation, tooth extraction, and filling up of cavities as well as oral medicines.
The newly located facility received more than 40 patients seeking basic dental services on its first day of opening on Tuesday.
While some people say the relocation of the department would help solve congestion issues at the national referral hospital, some say the location is too far from central Thimphu.
“At the national referral hospital, it was a difficult process to get a token and wait in line to receive dental services. Now that the dental department has been moved up, I think it will ease a lot of the process, although the hospital is not fully set up with equipment yet,” said Sonam Norbu, a patient.
“It is very convenient for those people with cars. But I think the distance is quite long for the people without cars to reach the dental hospital here at Taba since most people reside in the southern and central parts of Thimphu,” said Tshewang Norbu, a resident.
The medical superintendent at the national referral hospital said that the setting up of the dental chairs and water lines in the new facility is an important process of the relocation, which is why works are still underway.
The former dental wards at the national referral hospital will be used by other departments.
Edited by Kiphu