The real wealth of a country is its human resources and those countries that are investing in human resources, education, science, technology and innovation are making rapid progress. A knowledge-based economy is the answer to all socio-economic ills and health is also linked to the economic condition.
These views were expressed by chief guest Prof Dr Attaur Rehman, the patron-in-chief of Karachi University’s International Centre for Chemical and Biological Sciences, at the 27th International Children Health Conference, held under the aegis of the Hamdard Public School, Karachi and Hamdard Foundation Pakistan on the topic of ‘Universal Health Coverage – Every one – Everywhere’ on World Health Day. The conference was presided over by Dr Mohammad Assai Ardakani, the World Health Organisation’s representative in Pakistan.
Dr Rehman said knowledge was the key driver of socio-economic development, which is something that leaders in developing countries did not realise.
Exciting developments had been made in the understanding and reversing of the ageing process, he said, adding that genomics was used for tailoring new plant species.
Dr Ardakani, in his presidential address, said that people did not have access to treatment of preventable diseases, such as malaria. To overcome this situation it was necessary to help each other stay healthy, Dr Ardakani said, emphasising on health insurance for people.
Hamdard Foundation Pakistan President Sadia Rashid said that to achieve universal health coverage, it is best to lay infrastructure that is not institution or disease-based, but people-based.
“If you can spread awareness on how to stay healthy and prevent ill health or disease, a good half of the problem is well on the way to being solved,” she said.
Young speakers from Saudi Arabia, Iran, Japan and across the country also spoke on the occasion.