Health sector hit by nurse shortage

Minister says 0.9m nurses required by 2030.

Our Correspondent July 11, 2024
Govt asks KEMU, UHS to add 50 seats each to their masters in nursing degree programme. PHOTO: FILE


Minister for Parliamentary Affairs, and Law and Justice, Senator Azam Nazeer Tarar on Wednesday said the country is facing shortage of nursing staff at the national level as the country required 0.9 million more nurses to cater the growing needs of the population by 2030.

The minister was replying to the calling attention notice moved by Member National Assembly (MNA), Sehar Kamran to invite attention of the Minister for National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination to the matter of shortage of doctors and nurses in Islamabad, causing grave concern amongst the public.

Tarar informed that there was no shortage of doctors in the hospitals of the federal capital, but rather that of nurses.

“At present, 100,000 nurses are serving whereas there are 589 nursing schools and colleges operating across the country out of which 375 are private and 214 are public institutions,” he said.

He added that it was an important service and evening classes policy was being introduced and imposed since 2018.

Since, there were more females opting for this profession, there were efforts underway to manage their hostel and other needs and nursing colleges were encouraged to increase their seats to accommodate increasing number of aspirants, he said.

The minister underlined that some 20,000 doctors were entering the service system per year which was satisfactory and as per the WHO guidelines to cater the population of the country. However, he said concerns were emerging in the service ratio of those doctors in rural and urban areas.

Sehar Kamran in her supplementary question raised the concerns that the ratio of 5:10,000 meaning five nurses for 10,000 individuals was alarming.

There were 40,000 trained and registered doctors who were not actively practicing in the field, whereas the Interior Minister has pledged the US government to send Pakistani nurses to US, she added.


Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ