PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has removed 48 hospitals from the panel of Sehat Sahulat Programme, commonly known as Sehat Card Plus, for lacking the required facilities.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Health Minister Taimur Khan Jhagra said the decision was taken after proper evaluation of the health facilities previously registered with the universal health insurance scheme when the programme was launched.
He added that 48 hospitals, out of 200, had been removed for not meeting standards in the province while 32 hospitals had been added to the programme.
“There is no truth in reports that we are closing the programme. It’s a great initiative of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Health Department to strengthen the health delivery services through sehat card,” Taimur Jhagra said.
The minister said all hospitals which had been recognised must be re-evaluated as many of them still lacked basic requirements for sehat cards.
“The hospitals removed from the free health services list are private,” Jhagra went on to say.
According to officials, some of the people had initially managed to enlist ill-equipped and poor health facilities in the Sehat Sahulat Programme and their aim was making money rather than providing quality services to patients.
The officials said they used to receive hundreds of complaints against these private hospitals and before their removal, they were given enough time and opportunities to improve their standards, but they failed to do so.
Besides clinical deficiencies, some of the hospitals fleeced the patients by forcing them to pay in cash as well, they said.
The insurance company had earlier suspended membership of Qazi Hussain Ahmad Medical Complex in Nowshera for its poor standards and in view of the complaints filed by the patients against it.
Qazi Hussain Ahmad Medical Complex is the first medical teaching institution (MTI) run by the Board of Governors (BoG), which was removed from the list of sehat card service.
Officials said they had received hundreds of complaints about poor health services as well as lacking facilities.
The hospital, which is a teaching hospital for the Nowshera Medical College, has not been able to remove deficiencies and restore its membership. The hospital board is headed by a former bureaucrat, Ishfaq Khan.
The government has spent billions of rupees on the hospital in Nowshera but political interference by a Nowshera-based PTI leader used it to give employment to his blue-eyed people.
“The Qazi Hussain Ahmad Medical Complex not only lacked facilities for patients, but they used to compel patients to purchase medicines from the market,” an official told The News.
The insurance company had also removed membership of Bacha Khan Medical Complex (BKMC) Swabi for similar deficiencies, but according to the company, they overcame the deficiencies and got its membership restored.
The BKMC Board of Governors (BoG), had taken their job seriously. It was far behind in the list of MTI due to a lot of reasons but the active role and non-interference of the two PTI stalwarts, Asad Qaiser and Shahram Khan Tarakai and dedication of the board members put it on the track.
Within no time, they not only improved services but also added more specialties to the hospital.
The BoG has also resolved staff attendance and deficiencies in the medical college.
The hospitals which have been removed from the panel include: Darul Shifa Hospital, Asma Arif Maternity Home, Taj Medical Centre, Souvenir General Hospital, Zia Medical Complex, Manzoor Hospital, Haad Noor Surgical, Ali Medical and Surgical Centre, Ceena Medical and Surgical Centre, City Polyclinic Medical and Surgical Centre, Rahman Medical Centre, Royal Medical Complex, Shams Hospital Allied Specialist Hospital, Swabi Alam Medical Complex, Hassan Medical Complex, Ikhlas Medical Centre, Shifa Health Care Hospital Wari, Upper Dir, Allied Specialist Hospital, Al-Falah Surgical Centre, Al-Badar Surgical and Laparoscopic Centre, Al Noor Specialist Hospital,
Rizwan General Hospital, Ibn-e-Ceena General Hospital, Shifa General & Surgical Hospital, Abdal Medical Complex, Khyber Medical and Surgical Centre Shabqadar, Qadar General Hospital, Zia Teaching Hospital, Misbah Intl Hospital, Al-Sayed Medical and Surgical Centre Hangu, Mehar General Hospital and Maternity Home, Frontier Medical Centre Kohat, Al Habib General Hospital, City Medical Centre Timergara, Shahid Hussain Orthopaedic Hospital, Wahab Medical Complex, Gul Medical Centre, Al-Khidmat Younas Khattak Memorial, Mehboob Charity Vision, International Eye Hospital, Al-Khidmat Mashal Medical Complex, Baizai Surgical Centre, Junaid Medical Complex and Laproscopic Centre, Mardan Medical Centre, Qazi Medical Centre, Al-Syed Hospital, Khyber Hospital Mardan and Sheikh Yaseen Hospital.