–Court directs health secy to submit report on medical facilities within two months
ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar on Monday questioned the Khyber Pakhtunkhawa government’s “tall claims”, and asked for a report to be submitted on the condition of medical facilities in the province within two months.
“The KP government claims that they have turned the province into paradise whereas in reality it is in tatters,” the CJP said while hearing a suo motu case pertaining to public waste disposal from KP hospitals.
Justice Nisar asked the KP health secretary if he has visited the Peshawar mental hospital and noticed the condition there. In response, the official replied that he visited the hospital last week.
The chief justice lamented that patients in the mental institution were being treated worse than animals.
“They were locked up like animals, it seemed like people had forgotten these patients were human too,” the CJP remarked, adding that “if you don’t believe me, shall we visit these facilities.”
The health secretary replied that measures were taken to rectify the problems after the judge’s visit. “We are also looking to establish a separate campus,” he informed the court.
The top judge added that he received samples of medicines from the hospital which were past their expiry date. He criticised doctors for not visiting the hospital.
The CJP commented that the province was far from becoming paradise as it was in a dilapidated condition.
“I will visit in three to four days and see what actions have been taken to improve the facilities.”
The case was later adjourned for two months.
THE MATTER OF WASTE DISPOSAL:
As the court heard the case, the KP health secretary informed the bench that 63 public hospitals in the province produce 4,000 kg of waste on a daily basis of which only 3,600 kg can be disposed of with machines.
To which, Justice Ijazul Ahsan remarked that 480 kg of waste is not being disposed of properly. The court rebuked the provincial government for failing to fix the matter.
As the discussion shifted to private hospitals, the health secretary added that 158 private hospitals produce 860 kg of medical waste in the province while they can only dispose of 532 kg efficiently.
At this note, Justice Ahsan gave the health department till December 2019 to ensure that the matter is resolved and medical waste is taken care of.
The provincial health secretary promised that the matter will be resolved by June 2019.
In April, the chief justice had visited hospitals in KP while on an official visit to the province. At the time, the chief justice had summoned the then chief minister of KP Pervez Khattak to court to discuss the disposal of waste in the province.
“Do you know what is the population of Peshawar [and] how much waste is flowing into its streams?” Justice Nisar had asked Khattak at the time.
Later in August, while hearing a case regarding alleged irregularities in selection of people for managements of the KP teaching hospitals, a three-judge SC bench headed by Justice Nisar expressed its dismay over the way hospitals were being run in the province.