An effort was being made to establish permanent ties with the medical specialists and institutes of Canada so that Pakistani medical experts could benefit, said Minister Health Punjab Dr. Tahir Ali Javed on Sunday.
Dr. Tahir told that on the Chief Minister Punjab Ch Pervaiz Elahi and his request, the premier of Canada had sent this team to Pakistan. He also mentioned that the team would also be going to the Azad Kashmir after setting-up a surgical camp at Gujrat. It also expected that the team would also meet the CM on either Tuesday or Wednesday at Gujrat. “After visiting the AJK, they will come back to Lahore and will visit the Nursing Institute at the Jinnah Hospital. There is a possibility that the Hospital will be adopted by the Canadian government. However, the Punjab government will be extending an invitation to the Canadian premier to visit Pakistan in the near future, and sign a Memorandum of Understanding for this end,” he added. Dr. Tahir also hinted at the possibility of establishing a trauma centre in Lahore with the collaboration of Canada and its medical experts.
Earlier during the day, Dr. Tahir held a reception in the honour of the visiting seven-member team, comprising orthopaedic surgeons and other specialists of various disciplines from Canada, who will be proceeding to Gujrat on Monday (today) to set up a surgical camp at the Aziz Bhatti Shaheed Hospital (DHQ) Gujrat to provide specialised treatment facilities to the affected people of the earthquake.
The surgical camp would be continued for ten days and referred cases from the field hospitals and other serious nature cases would be treated at the camp. According to a Press release, the team is equipped with operational instruments and the latest equipments, like cardiac ventilators, which would be installed at the surgical camp of Gujrat.
The reception was also attended by Secretary Health Javed Malik, Technical Advisor Anwar Bugvi, DG Health Dr. Aslam Ch besides the medical team members Dr. Syed Yasir Haider Orthopaedic Surgeon (Aberdeen Hospital), Nova Scotia (Canada), Dr. Azer Khan Orthopaedic Surgeon (Southend Hospital, UK), Dr. Edison Skinner Aberdeen Hospital, Brenda White, Joyce Horne, Susan MacDonald (Aberdeen Hospital) and Ms. Perveen Sharif Team Coordinator and translator.
Dr. Tahir told that under rehabilitation programme of quake-affected people, the arrangements had been made for Psychotherapy, provision of accommodation and transportation of the injured persons to their native villages after treatment.
Already, in order to provide protective healthcare facilities to earthquake affectees, the Punjab government had sent 100 healthcare workers to spray in Azad Kashmir so that people could be saved from epidemic diseases in the affected areas whereas medical teams of the Punjab Health Department had set up their camps in calamity-stricken areas of Muzaffarabad, Bagh, Khattian, Pattal, Mansehra, Butgram besides other areas.
According to the Press release, Dr. Tahir said the Punjab government had also arranged 13000 beds for the injured at various hospitals in the province whereas more than 10,000 patients had been provided medical facilities in the public sector hospitals of the Punjab and about thousands patients were still under treatment in the various hospitals.
He said that Punjab Health Department had also sent 40 teams comprising six members including 2 to 3 doctors and 2 to 3 technicians/ dispensers and one member of WHO for the rehabilitation of rural health centres (RHCs) and basic health units (BHUs) in Azad Kashmir. “These teams will complete a comprehensive survey and submit their reports for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of BHUs and RHCs of Azad Kashmir,” he added.
Earlier the team members were received by Technical Advisor Dr. Anwar Bugvi, DG Health Dr. Aslam Ch besides other officials of the Health Department. (November 13, 2005)