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'Mindset of in-laws to be changed to help control shortage of doctors'
'Mindset of in-laws to be changed to help control shortage of doctors'

LAHORE: (Friday, March 08, 2019): Speakers at a conference have called upon the need to bring change in the mindset of in-laws of lady doctors to cope with acute shortage of doctors in the country. They said that many of lady doctors were not continuing their practice after marriage because of sanctions imposed by in-laws which was creating serious problems in health sector and a huge number of patients were suffering. They were addressing the first national conference on public health organized by Punjab University Institute of Social and Cultural Studies’ Department of Public Health at its auditorium. Advisor to Chief Minister Mr Haneef Patafi, PU Vice Chancellor Prof Niaz Ahmad, University of Health Sciences Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Javed Akram, King Edward Medical University Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Khalid Masood Gondal, Pro-Rector National University of Medical Sciences Lt Gen (retired) Dr Muhammad Aslam, ISCS Director Prof Dr Rubeena Zakar, foreign delegates, participants from various parts of country and a large number of students were present on the occasion.

Addressing the conference, Mr Haneef Patafi said that the child mortality was the biggest challenge being faced in the health sector in Punjab. He said that increase in number of deaths of infants was prime concern of the government and 200-beded mother and child hospitals were being established in five underprivileged districts of the province. He said that the government had allocated 289 billion rupees for health sector in the current fiscal year. He said that the government would include recommendation generated in the conference in health policy. PU VC Prof Niaz Ahmad urged the conference participants to prepare a comprehensive policy regarding public health. He said that medical doctors must be provided with maximum facilities along with appropriate service structure which would help control brain drain in the country. UHS VC Prof Dr Javed Akram said that a huge amount of public money was being spent to produce doctors. However, he said, many of lady doctors after marriage were not continuing their services and this was creating a serious challenge keeping in view population size of Pakistan and availability of number of doctors. He said that in-laws of female doctors must understand the problems being faced by the people due to shortage of doctors and they must not waste brilliant minds. He said that number of females had increased manifold and now 70 percent were female and 30 percent were male joining the medical profession. He said that almost 60 percent students were obese or overweight due to lack of participation in physical activities. KEMU VC Prof Dr Khalid Masood Gondal said that unfortunately public health sector had been badly ignored in Pakistan and there was no training program for family physicians. He said that now training program for family physicians were being planned at post graduate level. He said we must improve service delivery at primary and secondary healthcare levels. He said that we were facing another serious challenge of quackery due to ignorance among the people. He said that media should play role to curb the menace against quackery and create awareness among people. Lt Gen (r) Dr Muhammad Aslam urged the federal government to allocate at least 6 percent of GDP to health sector. Prof Dr Rubina Zakar said that the burden of both communicable and non-communicable diseases was increasing in Pakistan. She said that prevention was always better than the cure and for this purpose, we must have a comprehensive public health policy to cope with such issues. She said that the cost of curative healthcare was also very high and Pakistan’s population size was big while there was shortage of resources to provide health facilities to the citizens. She said that the current high-cost healthcare delivery system, which placed greater emphasis on acute hospital care than on community-based primary and preventive care, was no longer viewed as the ideal model for organizing and providing healthcare services. She said that the community-oriented primary care model and the discipline of community and socially responsive medicine was a process for making a healthcare system more rational, accountable, appropriate and socially relevant to the public. Later, souvenirs were distributed among the distinguished guests.