KARACHI: Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre’s (JPMC) 49th annual symposium concluded on Monday, after five days of presentations, scientific sessions and workshops by medical and academic experts.
It was held after the day’s sessions on gynecology and obstetrics, disaster management, general medicine, dental surgery and facio-maxillary sessions at JPMC and paeds medicine and surgery session at NICH.
Prof. Tasnim Ahsan, JPMC’s executive director, said that JPMC was the first institute in the country to organise a medical symposium. Some of the topics covered over this year’s symposium included neuromedicine, hematology, gastro surgery, laparoscopy histopathology, radiology, anesthesiology, dermatology, pediatric medicine and surgery and dentistry, among others.
However, Prof. Ahsan also referred to the confusion arising due to devolution of healthcare to the provinces after the passage of the 18th amendment. “JPMC does not get any funds for areas where it needs help, like teaching and research.” She also appreciated the work done by the hospital’s team, who often find themselves at the receiving end of criticism from the people.
JPMC had also invited three speakers from outside Karachi to highlight other healthcare issues in the country. Mehmoodul Hasan, a visually impaired senior lecturer at Baqai University Islamabad, said that there are nearly 12.5 million disabled people in Pakistan who need accessible facilities. “Doctors are [often] closer to disabled people than their parents. They can motivate them to lead normal lives.”
Faryal Gohar, an actor and human rights activist, presented the high maternal mortality rate of nearly 30,000 deaths per year as evidence for the hardships faced by women in the country.
Javed Jabbar, former information minister, highlighted various success stories in Pakistan’s healthcare sector, like Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation, Indus Hospital, the newly-constructed Memon Medical Institute and the Layton Rahmatulla Benevolent Trust eye hospitals, among others.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 24th, 2012.