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December 19, 2019

Issues, disease prevention discussed


December 19, 2019

LAHORE:Punjab Health Minister Prof Yasmin Rashid has said that Punjab government is focusing on primary health care by making prevention its top most priority.

For this purpose, about 14,000 doctors have been employed and 96 per cent of all the basic health units are covered by doctors through Central Indication Policy. She was addressing the Universal Healthcare Symposium held under the auspices of KEMCA UK and KEMU here on Wednesday.

While talking about hepatitis C prevention, its control and treatment, the minister said that 18,000 people were screened for hepatitis C in Nankana Sahib district, out of them, 14 per cent were found infected with hepatitis C virus. She said that for the advantage of poorest of the poor to get better healthcare, health cards were being distributed. As many as 5 million health cards have already been distributed among the people while a total of 7.2 million cards would be distributed till the next year.

She said that Punjab government had planned to establish five public hospitals in Attock, Bahawalnagar, Mianwali, Layyah and Rajanpur districts. “Neonatal and maternal mortality shall be reduced and the nursing schools shall be converted into nursing colleges,” she added.

KEMU Vice-Chancellor Prof Khalid Masud Gondal talked in detail about electronic monitoring of postgraduate training. He candidly elaborated that a physician could not be replaced by artificial intelligence.

Earlier, in the inaugural session, four themes were presented; cardiology services development, IT and management system, GP/MCH and diabetes and pulmonology. Dr Shahid Mahmood delivered a lecture on “Readiness of Solution Provisioning by Private Sector.” He presented the key statistics about the basic healthcare in Pakistan. He also described that 76 million people in the country were without sanitation access, whereas 54 million people did not have access to safe drinking water. Dr Faisal Sultan discussed the evidence of usefulness of IT to reduce medication error, clinical decision support, computer-assisted antimicrobial prescribing. Impact of this reduces the median therapy time. Prof AS Chughtai talked about “Public-Private Partnership in Lab Diagnostics”. Collaboration of public and private laborites is the need of the hour to provide timely report to the patients and better teaching opportunity to the medical students.

Dr Shafiq Gill presented talk on “Consolidating Pathology Services” in England. M Usman Kahlid Waheed discussed affordable licensed treatment and affordable diagnostics. Dr Waqas Ahmed said legislation was required to achieve digital Pakistan and healthy Pakistan.

Prof Abdul Bari Khan said that there was news about Thalassemia children getting HIV from blood transfusions. Human error is a number one source of transfusion complications in blood banking with fatal consequences. Salman Shah stressed the need for timely screening for lung cancer for its effective treatment in the early stage.

Prof Ghias un Nabi Tayyab said deaths due to liver diseases were increasing in Asia pacific region. Hepatitis C is a main cause of liver cancer in Pakistan. He talked about service coverage targets for the core interventions of the Global Health Sector Strategy on Viral Hepatitis. Prof Umar Sadat, professor from UK, said atherosclerosis was a systematic inflammation and use of MRI for immediate assessment of plaques was essential.

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