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October 16, 2012

Malala admitted to UK hospital for critical treatment

 
October 16, 2012

LONDON: Malala Yousafzai arrived on Monday for treatment at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham — an NHS (National Health Service) hospital having a specialist major trauma centre for patients of serious injuries.
Taliban gunmen shot her in the head and she received treatment for a week in Pakistan but the doctors at the Military Hospital in Rawalpindi decided that she should be treated in Birmingham for the next “critical” stage.
The hospital chosen has the capacity for Malala to be treatedwithout affecting the normal operations of the hospital. The Pakistan government will meet full costs of the medical evacuation, NHS care and any ongoing rehabilitation. The Pakistan Army said in a statement that Malala would need to have bones in her skull repaired or replaced as well as long-term rehabilitation.
Britain’s Foreign Secretary William Hague said: “Last week’s barbaric attack on Malala Yousafzai and her school friends shocked Pakistan and the world. Malala’s bravery in standing up for the right of all young girls in Pakistan to an education is an example to us all. Malala will now receive specialist medical care in an NHS hospital. Our thoughts remain with Malala and her family at this difficult time. The public revulsion and condemnation of this cowardly attack shows that the people of Pakistan will not be beaten by terrorists. The UK stands shoulder-to-shoulder with Pakistan in its fight against terrorism.”
Malala, 14, is expected to need treatment to repair or replace damaged bones in her skull and to undergo neurological treatment.Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, the senior Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister of State responsible for Pakistan, told The News: “I am relieved that Malala has come to the UK for the urgent treatment she needs. I felt it was essential Britain stood ready to support this brave young campaigner. The world responded when Malala was attacked. We support her fight for the right of girls to have an

education. Her values are our values.”
Also yesterday, former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown — now the UN special envoy for global education — said he was launching a petition in Malala’s name “in support of what Malala fought for”.
He said: “I know that Britain will offer Malala the best treatment possible and the British people will welcome her, hoping and praying for her recovery. Today we are launching on www.educationenvoy.org a petition under the headline ‘I am Malala’ in support of what Malala fought for — that every girl has the chance to go to school. Today, sadly, 32 million girls are not going to school and it is time to fight harder for Malala’s dream to come true.”
“Malala was shot in the head by the Taliban simply because as a girl she wanted to go to school. The petition calls on Pakistan to ensure that every girl like Malala has the chance to go to school and calls on the international community to ensure that all out-of-school children around the world are in education by the deadline for the delivery of the Millennium Development Goals, the end of 2015,” he added.
A Downing Street spokeswoman said: “We offered last Thursday our help to the Government of Pakistan in caring for her because she does need particular specialist care. The authorities in Pakistan have taken us up on the offer. The Pakistani government is paying all transport, migration, medical, accommodation and subsistence costs for Malala and her party.”
The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, where Malala has been admitted, said in a statement on Monday night that she was safely transferred to the facility following a comfortable flight from Pakistan. She is currently stable and being assessed by a team of multi-specialist doctors, including clinicians from neurosurgery, imaging, trauma and therapies, from the Queen Elizabeth and Birmingham Children’s hospitals.
A full medical team accompanied her. “Malala’s ongoing clinical care is now the hospital’s priority. We will be providing timely condition checks and where appropriate, will give more detailed information about her condition as her treatment progresses,” the statement said.
Earlier, an ISPR spokesman in Rawalpindi said in a press release that the medical team that was treating Malala had been reviewing her progress at regular intervals and consulting with international experts. He said the acute phase had been managed in accordance with international standards and the medical team was pleased with her present condition, which was described as optimal.
The ISPR spokesman said the view of the international experts was that the nureo-surgery performed in Peshawar was exactly right and indeed saved her life. The decision to transfer her from Peshawar to the specialised paediatric intensive care unit at the AFIC was correct and timely. The specialist treatment that she received at the AFIC had the beneficial effect of stabilising her condition. He said the panel of Pakistani doctors and international experts agreed that Malala would require prolonged care to fully recover from the physical and psychological effects of trauma that she received.
The spokesman said that Malala’s family was consulted and their wishes were also taken into consideration. Accordingly, the panel of doctors recommended that Malala be shifted to a UK centre having the capability to provide integrated care to children with severe injury. Pakistan arranged with the UAE for an especially-equipped air ambulance used to transfer Malala to the UK. All expenses, including transportation of Malala by air ambulance and treatment abroad, would be borne by the Pakistan government.
Our correspondent in Islamabad adds: The Women’s Parliamentary Caucus (WPC) organised a programme at the Parliament House to pay tribute to Malala. In her opening remarks, WPC Secretary Dr Nafisa Shah in very strong words condemned the heinous crime and prayed for Malala’s early recovery.
In a joint statement, the WPC members condemned the obscurantism of the militants who use religion to promote their agenda of hatred and extremism. They reiterated their support for all Pakistanis fighting against terrorism, especially the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Fata and urged the government, all elements of the society, judiciary and government functionaries to stand firm in fighting against terrorism.
APP adds from Hunza: Malala found hundreds of admirers in Gulmit village in Gojal Valley. The students and teachers of the Federal Government Boys High School, Gulmit, held a special prayer session for the female activist on Monday and prayed for her early recovery and long life.
A Yaum-e-Dua day was held for Malala across Azad Jammu & Kashmir on Monday. The PPP workers, supporters and locals, to express solidarity with Malala, held meetings and staged rallies.In Islamabad, the National Youth Assembly (NYA) appealed to the Pakistan government to nominate Malala for the Nobel Peace Prize.