Controversies surrounding the Punjab Institute of Cardiology rage on, especially following the emergence of a debate over the appointment of the institute’s new medical superintendent (MS).
The Young Doctors’ Association (YDA) claimed on Saturday that it did not let Dr Muhammad Javed take charge as the new MS of the PIC. Dr Javed, on the other hand, denied the claim and said he had, in fact, assumed charge of his office.
Meanwhile, three more people died in Lahore on Saturday after consuming adulterated medicines distributed by the PIC, increasing the unofficial death toll to 123.
The medicine – IsoTab – was recently found to have a large amount of anti-bacterial, which triggered an unknown disease in heart patients who consumed it.
With the death toll constantly rising, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and the Punjab government have taken several steps to control the matter.
The young doctors said that the Punjab government had assured them of not taking action against any doctor until the findings of the judicial inquiry fixed the responsibility of deaths on a doctor from the PIC.
Dr Javed, who came to the PIC on Saturday to take charge as the new MS, had no choice but to leave. “We didn’t misbehave with Dr Javed. We just told him that he should go back to the health secretary’s office and inform him that the YDA did not let him assume charge of his new responsibilities,” Dr Amir Bandesha, the YDA office bearer of PIC, told The Express Tribune.
He said that on behalf of the Punjab government, Senator Pervaiz Rashid had assured the YDA during a meeting last Sunday that no new doctors would be appointed on the posts of those who have been suspended in connection with the drug reaction deaths. “Today, the government tried to breach its promise,” he added.
However, rejecting YDA’s claims, Dr Javed said he had assumed his new charge.
He said he would convert the PIC into a patient-friendly hospital by getting it out of the present crisis. A health department spokesman also confirmed that Dr Javed has assumed the charge.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 5th, 2012.
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