Quetta blast once again highlights the importance of proper preventive measures

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 Increasing Violence, Terrorist activities at hospitals

Quetta blast once again highlights the importance
of proper preventive measures

All healthcare facilities should have proper boundary walls,
security manned Entry and Exist points

QUETTA: The latest tragic events, suicide bombing at Emergency Department of Sandman Civil Hospital Quetta which results in the loss of over seventy precious lives, majority of them being lawyers has once again highlighted the importance of proper preventive measures. It has been pointed out earlier that in view of the increasing incidents of violence against healthcare professionals and hospitals, all healthcare facilities should have proper boundary walls and security manned entry and exist points. However, so far these recommendations have fallen on deaf ears and a vast majority of healthcare facilities lack these basic measures.

What is more disturbing is the fact that even the hospital staff is not much worried about these numerous unmanned entry and exit points because, it is alleged that  they use these to pilferage drugs and medicines, equipment and instruments from the hospitals. ICRC Symposium on the topic of violence against healthcare professionals and hospitals held at Karachi a few months ago had also recommended such preventive measures but one fails to understand why the authorities  seems to be least bothered and concerned on such sensitive issues. It is their failure and negligence that such incidents keep on occurring on regular intervals.

Administration of these healthcare facilities is also responsible for all this and they should also be held accountable.  One hopes that after such a serious tragic incident, all those concerned will wake up and initiate appropriate measures so that such incidents do not occur in future. These preventive measures are needed and are in place almost everywhere in the world even in normal circumstances but while we are faced with a serious threat of terrorism, we have failed to ensure security of healthcare facilities. Most often, it is the Emergency Departments which are the scene of such tragic events, hence there needs to be extra security measures around this area. In fact, Emergency Department in all healthcare facilities should have separate boundary and no visitor to the hospitals should be allowed without security check and that too in the visiting hours. Undue traffic of people at other times also needs to be checked. The healthcare professionals should also be subjected to the security check while entering these healthcare facilities as it is in their own interest and will make sure that no one uses the healthcare professionals for terrorist activities or inciting violence.

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