Thalassemia law must be implemented to control population with serious blood disorders - Dr. Asim Qidwai


Treatment of Blood Disorders

Thalassemia law must be implemented to
control population with serious
blood disorders - Dr. Asim Qidwai

AMTF providing Treatment of Blood Disorders
free of cost since eleven years- Dr. Abdul Malik

KARACHI: Thallasemia Law passed by the Sindh Assembly many months ago making blood screening mandatory for couples before their marriage has not been implemented resulting in an increase in population of babies with serious blood disorders. Dr Asim Qidwai CEO of Afzaal Memorial Thalassemia Foundation (AMTF) has urged the concerned authorities to ensure implementation of this Law which is the only way to control the increase of population with blood disorders. He was addressing to Health Reporters at AMTF Centre on June 17th, 2014. Dr. Abdul MalikConsultant Neurologist, Dr. Nadeem Nusrat Consultant Hematologist and Mr. Rehan Yaseen Finance Secretary, AMTF ware also present on the occasion.


Picture shows from (L to R) Mr. Rehan Yaseen Finance Secretary AMTF,
Dr. Nadeem Nusrat Consultant Hematologist, Dr. Asim Qidwai CEO of AMTF
and Dr. Abdul Malik Consultant Neurologist photographed while addressing
the Health Reporters at Afzaal Memorial Thallasemia Foundation
Centre on June 17th, 2014.

Dr. Asim Qidwai further said that Thalassemia is a disorder of hemoglobin molecule inside red blood cells.It is increasing very rapidly in our country and every year eighty to one hundred thousand children are born with blood disorders. We have around twelve lac sixty thousand patients of Thalassemia in Pakistan and it is fast increasing because of little preventive measures being taken.The new law, when it is fully implemented, requires a test for a marrying couple for the disease. The test would show whether one or both partners are Thalassemia minor. If the man and woman are Thalassemia minor, their offspring will have 25 per cent risk of having Thalassemiamajor meaning these children will have to live their entire life with regular blood transfusions.A test can help prevent such marriages and lessen the risks for children suffering from this disease. Thalassemia minor patients carry the disease, but do not show symptoms. When they marry a non-carrier, the child born may also be a Thalassemia minor patient. A child with Thalassemia required blood transfusion once or twice a month, which helped extend their lifespan but repeated transfusions could increase the level of iron in their bodies posing another danger to their lives.

Treatment of Blood Disorders, Dr. Qidwai stated is very expensive. We look forward to the participation of the community and request them to come forward and support us. Public awareness can play an important role to control this deadly disease. He urged the print and electronic media to create awareness about this noble cause.

Dr. Abdul Malik Consultant Neurologist speaking at the occasion said that Afzaal Memorial Thalassemia Foundation (AMTF) is serving the community since eleven years by providing blood transfusion facilities free of cost. It hasnow established as afull fledged facility providing sub specialty clinical services under one roof. All patients are treated free of cost with the concept that our patients are our guests. Giving details about AMTF Dr. Abdul Malik said that AMTF is the only organization which has focused on concept of multidisciplinary services under one roof like Chelation, psychology, nutritional, pediatrics, oncology, ophthalmology, ENT, Orthopedics, Neurology, physician, sonologist, pharmacists etc. because Thalassemia management requires a team approach. We are unique because we are providing in patient and ICU services at AMTF. Five bed Thalassemia ICU with ventilator support and centralized HEPA filter system is the best facility in Town, he added. At present about six hundred seventy three children are being treated at AMTF free of cost which also includes free medicines, free meal besides transportation etc. During the last eleven years AMTF, Dr. Malik informed has examined sixty five thousand patients in OPD, twenty one thousand were provided blood transfusions and over two hundred fifty thousand tests were performed and over two hundred eleven million rupees were spent with the help of philanthropists. During the year 2013-14, sixteen thousand children were examined in OPD and five thousand were provided blood transfusion besides one hundred thousand were provided diagnostic facilities and eighty one million rupees were spent during this period. One hundred ten million rupees are required for the year 2014-15, he added. All accounts of AMTF are being audited annually. Arrangement has also being made at AMTF for counseling and psychotherapy of parents and relatives of the patients by qualified Psychologists. AMTF Dr. Malik said is entering into new phase of its journey with an expansion phase which comprises of development of a new laboratory, day care and blood bank with the cost of about four crore rupees.

It is our mission to develop an institute for benign hematology with a well-built research where, quality clinical care will be given regardless of paying ability. Our vision is to deliver the utmost level of passionate care and create mass awareness about childhood blood diseases. Our patients are our guest, we try to provide them Quality Care, focus on capacity building of our team and research, Dr. Abdul Malik, concluded.