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September 10, 2018

PIMS wants more money for provision of free medicines to all patients


September 10, 2018

Islamabad: The Executive Director of the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) Dr. Raja Amjad Mahmood Saturday urged the government to increase the hospital’s allocated budget for purchase of medicines, from the current Rs208.75 million to Rs625 million, so that the dream of providing 100 percent free medicines to every single patients can be brought to fruition. Briefing the Minister for Health Aamer Mehmood Kiani, who paid a surprise visit to PIMS and Polyclinic on Saturday, Dr. Amjad flagged the need to increase funds for purchase of medicines for indoor patients on the one hand, and for purchase, repair and maintenance of hospital equipment, on the other. With reference to human resource, he disclosed that of the total 4,190 sanctioned posts in various grades, 1,426 posts are lying vacant. Of these, 1,010 posts are of the BPS 16-21 category, while 131 fall under BPS 6-15, and another 285 under BPS 1-5.

“We will increase the hospital’s funds and make up for human resource deficiencies for the sake of improved patient care,” Kiani responded while promising revolutionary improvements in both PIMS as well as Polyclinic. “We are moving on fast track to improve health facilities in these two major hospitals, which are catering to bulk of patients, not only from Islamabad but other contiguous areas as well,” he added.

Dr. Amjad’s presentation included a slide listing “urgent needs of PIMS.” Topping the list was the issue of promotions of doctors and supporting staff. Responding to the requirement, Kiani said, “We will make PIMS a model hospital, and revamp the service and salary structures of doctors, nurses and paramedical staff.” Other urgent needs included outsourcing of housekeeping department, hiring of contingency staff, allocation of funds for already approved PC-1s, improvement in ambulatory services, increase in salaries of doctors and staff working in hazardous conditions, allocation of land for construction of PIMS Employees Housing Society, provision of surgical implants to various departments, and initiation of liver transplant.

In presenting its performance report for the last four months, Dr. Amjad claimed availability of 100% free medicines and diagnostic tests to all emergency patients; availability of extra stretchers and wheelchairs; and prominent display of the list of medicines available in the emergency.

The ED also presented details of various development schemes that have either been approved in PSDP 2018-19, or are still pending. Of the 22 schemes, 13 have been approved while the fate of 9 hangs in balance. These are construction of female doctors’ hostel (Rs222.062 million), extension of cardiac centre (Rs1639.963 million), upgradation of gastroenterology department (Rs386.017 million), establishment of hematology department (Rs588.063 million), establishment of unit for shredding, sterilization and disposal of medical waste at SZABMU (Rs295.316 million), upgradation of existing facilities at PIMS (Rs200 million), procurement of MRI equipment (Rs316.733 million), and upgradation of Neonatology Department (Rs58.200 million). Dr. Amjad requested approval of all the above projects.

The ED informed the minister about recent revival of the kidney transplant centre, where 8 transplants have been performed so far.

“The gamma camera purchased in 2016 will start functioning soon. The installation of incinerators is also in progress. For the first time, cardiac emergency has been started with free medicines and cardiac stents available for poor and entitled patients,” he maintained. A total of 90 CCTV/IP cameras have been installed in buildings of various service delivery components of the hospitals, the Minister was told.

Patient load at PIMS has progressively been increasing over the years, with the Out-Patient Department attending to 12,54,024 patients in 2017-18 as against 581,312 in 2005-06, and the EAC bearing a load of 628,252 patients in 2017-18 as against 223,286 in 2005-06. Admissions in the current year have been 72,367 as against 41,424 in 2005-06 while surgical procedures have touched the figure of 27,508 during 2017-18 as against 19,026 in 2005-06.

Later, Kiani visited Polyclinic where he directed the medical staff to spare no effort in provision of best possible treatment to patients. “There will be zero tolerance for negligence in this regard,” he categorically repeated. During a visit to the hospital’s Vaccination Centre, he directed that all children of eligible age be vaccinated against deadly diseases.

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