Lack of trained and skilled human resource is our main challenge

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ICON 2020
Lack of trained and skilled human 
resource is our main challenge
Indus is building a State of the Art University 
of Health Sciences to address public health 
needs of the country - Dr. Abdul Bari Khan

KARACHI: Lack of trained and skilled human resource is a major problem facing Paksitan. This challenge is particularly plaguing the health sector where poorly trained and scarce quality resource has resulted in nothing short of a catastrophe in provision of health for the people of Pakistan. It is also increasing the cost of healthcare. These views were expressed by Dr. Abdul Bari Khan, Chief Executive Officer Indus Network while speaking in the inaugural sessiuon of the 5th Biennial Conference (ICON 2020) held a local hotel here from January 17-19, 2020. It was inaugurated by Dr. Arif Alvi, Prersident of Paksitan and was very well attednded by helahtcare providers from all over the country and some foreign delegates. The theme of the conference was Building Bridges for Better Healthcare.

Contining Dr. Abdul Bari Khan said that Indus is not shying away from its responsibility and a state of the arts University of Health Sciences aiming to address the public health needs of the country is being built. It will start in 2021 and when fully functional will have a total enrolment of 2,500 students adding trained high quality healthcare professional to Pakistan`s workforce. We strongly believe that a robust health sector in Pakistan includes both public and private providers along with corporate and pharmaceutical partners. Such partnerships have been critical to the cause of health provision in Pakistan for the most vulnerable.

Dr. Abdul Bari Khan, further said that at Indus, the expansion and success of the Indus Health Network to be able to reach out to millions of underprivileged citizens of Pakistan has only been made possible by highly efficient and symbiotic partnerships especially with the government. Our partnerships have clearly demonstrated that it is vital to work closely both with the government as well as other sectors to produce the desired results. We are collaborating with a wide range of international, regional and national partners to provide optimum integrated tertiary, secondary, primary and community care to address the evolving needs of our population.


President of Pakistan Dr. Arif Alvi, Prof. Abdul Bari Khan, Dr. Mwelecele Ntuli Malecela,
Dr. Shamvil Ashraf, Dr. Muhammad Fareeduddin and
Dr. Saima Salman speaking at the
inaugural session of ICON 2020 organized by Indus Health Network at Karachi recently.

As we continue to shape ourselves for success, we are seeking to align and improve our clinical service, information systems and corporate operations so that we can improve safety, clinical outcomes ultimately aimed at improving our patients` experiences. We established ICON with a mission to transform, change, innovate by learning from global experience and developments and to ensure the successful integration of knowledge and best practices in our Network`s delivery of services. The challenge in health in Pakistan of course is to keep improving the way we work collectively through our disparate partnerships.

Our objective Dr. Abdul Bari said is to become the most technologically advanced health network in this region – working with all healthcare partners in the provision of integrated and an organisation that every staff member and service user can be proud of. Indus Hospital is expanding to become, what will be the largest free of cost hospital in the private sector of Pakistan. In phase one, we are expanding from 350 beds to more than 1,300 beds with an ultimate ambition of 1,800 beds. He requested the Federal Government to have the much awaited share and contribution to becom a significant part of this expansion Prograqmme.

President Dr. Arif Alvi addressing the partcipants said that Public-Private Partnership is our highest priority to lessen the healthcare burden. The Indus Health Network has been a key partner in this process. Indus has been at the forefront, bringing technical expertise, technology, and resources to government hospitals and primary care facilities . He congratulkated Dr. Abdul Bari Khan and his teams for exemplary partnerships with other stake holders to benefit our people. They have brought state-of-the-art facilities to cities like Badin. They systemized blood donation and brought it to an international standard in cities in Sindh as well as Multan and Bahawalpur. And they have gone into the most marginalized and furthest communities to screen for TB and other diseases.

Dr. Mwelecele Ntuli Malecela, Representatives of WHO in her key note address stated that WHO has designated 2020 as the year of the nurse and midwife in recognition of the fundamental role the estimated 20 million nurses and midwives play in transforming health care globally and in supporting the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. First two decades of the 21st century have changed our world radically, a World in which we face the threat of emerging and re-emerging diseases, of antimicrobial resistance, noncommunicable diseases and rapid global interaction. we are witnessing the consequences of climate change. Extreme weather conditions and unprecedented temperatures foster the spread of diseases worldwide. Integrated approaches enable successful delivery of high-quality health care to all, particularly the poorest and those in direst need.

These diseases of poverty affect more than 1 billion people in 149 countries and have their greatest impact on people who lack access to adequate sanitation, basic infrastructure and health services. Besides causing significant morbidity and mortality, NTDs also stigmatize and discriminate in communities. Over the past decade with the help dedicated partners including donors, pharmaceutical companies and nongovernmental organizations, many countries have made incredible progress. Unprecedented progress is being achieved against many disease, notably sleeping sickness, dracunculiasis, lymphatic filariasis and trachoma.

In 2018 alone, Dr. Mwelecele stated WHO recognized eight countries as having eliminated at least one NTD. In 2019, Mexico became the first country to be validated by WHO as free from human rabies transmitted by dogs. Historically low numbers of cases of human African trypanosomiasis are being recorded. Visceral leishmaniasis has almost been eliminated in Bangladesh and Nepal, and the number of cases of Buruli ulcer has decreased by almost 60% since 2008. This progress would have been impossible without the exemplary public private partnerships that have stimulated global efforts to eliminate NTDs.

To meet our targets for control, elimination and eradication, we need new and innovative tools. Tools that can measure inequity just as surely as they measure clinical impact. We also need to better understand the impact of climate change on NTDs and to reach populations affected by our rapidly changing planet and those whose lives are blighted by conflict and insecurity, factors that contribute to the spread of these debilitating diseases.

We must work in an integrated manner, particularly at a time when donors and policy-makers are calling for improved efficiency to expand the reach and impact of their programmes. We must build bridges not only to raise awareness among those communities affected by rabies but also to increase access to lifesaving immunoglobulins and vaccines; to build effective surveillance systems and to foster mutual accountability between donors and recipient governments. All this requires common understanding as well as collective leadership, a collaborative mindset and a key partnering skill set. With these critical elements in place, partnerships can achieve real impact, she concluded.

Dr. Shamvil Ashraf highlighted the initiatives of Indus Network and informed that in order to reach out to more people, to benefit more patients and to build the capacity of public hospitals’ personnel, we decided to enter into a partnership with government. It also helped us in replicating our model of healthcare which was free treatment for all.”

Earlier Dr. Muhammad Fareeduddin, Chair, ICON 2020, in his welcome address said that Pakistan was the first country to adopt United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals 2030 agenda. Indus’ ICON 2020 is committed to contribute to the Goal No. 3 of good health and well-being for all. The three day conference have forty pre conference workshops , plenary sessions, symposias, and poster presentations. Session for nurses, physios, pharmacists, speech therapy, counsellors besides clinical specialities like pulmonology, plastic surgery, public healkth and pathology were also part of the conference.

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