RAWALPINDI: The unavailability of funds has put operations at Rawalpindi Institute of Urology and Kidney Transplant (RIUT) on hold.
In the first phase of upgradation the emergency, OPD, and Dialysis Unit of the hospital were supposed to be made operational. However, even after dozens of meetings, there has been no progress on the matter.
Due to the rising number of kidney diseases and absence of any government facility providing treatment for kidney related illnesses, the ex-chief minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif laid its foundation in 2012. However, during his five-year tenure, his government was unable to complete this project.
About 25 electromedical machines have been supplied to the hospital though there is no staff to operate it.
Furthermore, up to Rs300 million are required to pay the contractors’ dues, while another Rs230 million are required to making the hospital operational in the first phase.
The Medical Superintendent of the hospital Dr Nasir Mehmood stated that 75 per cent of medical and general equipment is yet to be purchased. He added that the tender process has been stopped after completion due to shortage of funds.
Wealth, poverty propping up Pakistan's illegal kidney trade
He added that the recruitment process was also pending. However, the recruitments could bring an additional financial burden.
Dr Nasir added that up to Rs530 million were required to make the emergency, OPD and Dialysis Unit of the hospital functional within 45 days. However, even then there were still many phases that needed to be completed before the hospital could become fully operational.
It has been reported that many patients facing kidney related diseases succumb to death because they cannot afford the care at private hospitals.
A patient, Khalid Mehmood Khan, said that he undergoes dialysis treatment three times a week. He added that he was unable to afford a kidney treatment privately and was compelled to undergo the dialysis process frequently because there is no government facility providing treatment for kidney diseases.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 7th, 2019.