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April 17, 2018

KP govt plans to establish gastroenterology unit


April 17, 2018

PESHAWAR: Establishing much-needed gastroenterology unit in the Khyber Teaching Hospital (KTH) has always been a difficult task for the successive governments but the incumbent government has taken note of sufferings of patients and plans to set up the facility at the tertiary care hospital, sources told The News on Monday.

Senior faculty members in KTH said equipment for the endoscopy had long been purchased but none of the governments bothered to set up gastroenterology unit and appoint qualified gastroenterologists. “It seems quite strange as there are gastroenterology services in 18 districts of the province but KTH, a tertiary care hospital in the provincial capital is lacking this vital service,” said one faculty member.

Pleading anonymity, he patients suffering from stomach-related problems are admitted in KTH but they are sent to the Hayatabad Medical Complex (HMC) for most the basic investigations.“This is not only difficult for the patients but hard for the attendants to? take the indoor patients from KTH to HMC for investigations like ERCP,” said the physician. He said efforts were made in the past by certain chief executives but they could not set up gastroenterology services due to strong opposition by certain influential people in and outside the hospital. “This is need of the hour and if the present government failed to establish this facility then nobody will do in future,” the faculty member noted.

A bizarre argument, he said, is given in opposition of gastroenterology unit, saying when there is no functional cardiology unit in KTH, there is no need to set up gastroenterology.Presently there is dedicated gastroenterology department in HMC which is always remained over burden due to lack of services in the peripheries and teaching hospitals.

Besides KP and Fata, patients from Punjab, Balochistan and neighbouring Afghanistan are brought to the gastroenterology department in HMC.Also, the department has trained several doctors in gastroenterology services but they find it difficult to get jobs and thus appointed in other services and their skills remain unutilised.

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