Comfort, high-tech, accessibility: Moscow polyclinics are changing

November 17
Healthcare

Soon Moscow polyclinics will become comfortable and up to date, and people won’t have to wait long to see specialists, while diagnostics will become faster and more high-quality due to a cutting-edge technics. Until the end of 2023, 135 local medical institutions will be upgraded based on the New Moscow Standards programme.

For example, the renovation has already been completed at the offices of polyclinic No. 46 in the Basmanny District, and the upgrade is in full swing at polyclinic No. 2 on Ierusalimskaya Street. Read this mos.ru article on the overhaul and changes in the building.

Comfort and high-tech

An information desk with an online screen showing doctors’ schedules above it in place of a reception room on the ground floor of city polyclinic No. 46’s main office on Kazakova Street. A friendly cloakroom attendant will politely accept coats. Visitors put on overshoes on soft ottomans. It smells like fresh-made coffee: there is a vending machine with drinks and snacks in the hall. There is also a plasma television on the wall and an aquarium with coral and sea fish. Music plays in the elevator. Only the white and blue design and the My Polyclinic logo across the wall remind visitors they are at a medical institution. The repairs have been completed here.

Photo by Yulia Ivanko, Mos.ru

 

Being more open to people is one of the New Moscow Standards’ main goals: free space, recreation halls, and a cafeteria.

The second goal is high-tech including digital charts with tests and analyses and easy appointments with doctors on the website.

The third goal is easy access. The most popular areas (therapists and procedures) should be located on the ground and first floors. Every polyclinic will have advanced diagnostics equipment and the most needed specialists.

“The equipment includes a mammography machine, an X-ray machine, an ultrasound scan, a blood pressure measurement system and a 12-channel ECG machine. Moreover, we have ordered fitness equipment for physical therapy exercises that will be placed in a special room in the second office. By the way, as an experiment we have installed a new ECG device, which uploads the results into an electronic chart automatically in the head office. In the future such machines will appear at other polyclinics, too. Under the new standards, we also plan to install MRI and CT scanning machines as well as a densitometer (to examine bone tissue, which is especially important for the elderly), an expert-class ultrasound and treadmill to identify pathologies of the cardiovascular system at the head office,” Denis Serov explained.

There will also be an allergist/immunologist, gastroenterologist, pulmonologist, proctologist and infectious disease specialist at the head office as well as eight of the most in-demand doctors at each branch: therapist, urologist, ophthalmologist, ENT specialist, cardiologist, neurologist, endocrinologist and a surgeon.

“Previously there mostly were general practitioners at the second branch. There was no X-ray machine there. During the improvements, we distributed doctors at two other offices of ours: No. 1 on Rabochaya Street and No. 3 on Vorontsovskaya Street. To make access easier for patients, the Moscow Healthcare Department together with the Transport Department have launched a new bus route, P46,” the chief medical officer says.

The bus runs from Volgogradsky Prospekt metro station and stops at all the offices, in particular, near Proletarskaya and Ploshchad Ilyicha metro stations. According to the polyclinic’s staff, patients liked the idea so much that they asked to keep the bus route after the repairs are over.

Modern standards

The overhaul at the second office of polyclinic No. 46 began in June 2020. This was necessary because the building did not comply with the modern standards.

“It was built in 1972. Back then, it was a standard four-storey polyclinic. Today the ceilings are old and the doors and elevators are too narrow, making it difficult for people in wheelchairs. We received a lot of complaints,” Denis Serov recalls.

Workers have already broadened and strengthened the doorways. Elevators, which have also become wider, were moved to a new place.

“Before the overhaul, the elevators opened into the corridor, which is quite narrow, and it is impossible to broaden it because of the loadbearing walls. Patients in wheelchairs left the elevator and could not even make a turn in this corridor. This is why we built sections and moved the elevators there. Now patients with low mobility will go from the elevators into these small areas, turn freely and then move to the corridor,” said Project Manager Alexander Grishkov.

On the outside, the building will have a sign with the New Moscow Standards: Accessibility, High-Tech, Comfort. The façade is not yet ready: the engineers have only had time to insulate and strengthen it. Soon it will be covered with architectural concrete. However, according to Grishkov, the most difficult work is already done. It is more complicated to repair an old building than erect a new one. Workers have to work in small spaces. For example, to replace ceiling tiles, they had to remove the framework and then reinstall it.

Photo by Maxim Denisov, Mos.ru

“During the first phase, old elements were dismantled. Then new ones were installed. The roof was completely replaced; the old tiles were removed and metal reinforcement elements added. Ventilation was installed. There was no ventilation system at all before the repairs. A smoke removal system was installed in case of fire. Now work on the wiring is underway,” the project manager explained.

It was impossible to install modern diagnostic equipment such as MRI or CT scans with the old power supply system; it didn’t have enough capacity. After the overhaul, the power supply system will have the capacity for the increased load from the high-tech machines.

There are almost 200 workers at the site. Hammers bang, drills buzz. The builders are installing new windows with aluminum frames: more durable than the plastic ones. Employees say there were draughts before and heating pipes were leaking. During the winter, an enormous old heater was constantly running on the ground floor. When the polyclinic opens after the overhaul, this heater will be removed.

“Once we are done with the windows, we will put in the heating and begin the finishing work with fine plaster and paint. We will cover the floors with ceramic tiles. And in the X-ray room there will be a self-leveling floor with surfacing that will block harmful rays,” says Alexander Grishkov.

There will be washstands in every room and even showers in some of them.

Good prognosis

According to Denis Serov, the first and third branches of polyclinic No. 46 are the next in line for the updates. They were also built in the 1970s and are in need of major repairs.

“The head office will soon move to Rabochaya Street where a new eight-storey building is being constructed. After that, our polyclinic in Kazakova Street will remain, too,” the chief medical officer says.

The builders are keeping the opening day a secret for now. But the medical staff has high hopes that they won’t have to wait too long, and their polyclinic will become a good example of converting to the New Moscow Standards.

Source: mos.ru

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