Govt directs hospitals to develop an emergency disaster plan


–Leaves of hospital staff have also been cancelled

ISLAMABAD: The federal government has directed the heads of all hospitals falling under its domain to formulate an emergency disaster plan and set up disaster management corners to deal with any untoward situation in the wake of rising tensions between Pakistan and India.

The Ministry of National Health Service, Regulation and Coordination has instructed the heads of all federal hospitals to prepare themselves to deal with any untoward situation in the prevailing conditions. The secretary of health ministry instructed the executive directors of Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences PIMS, Federal Government Polyclinic Hospital, National Institute of Rehabilitation Diseases, Capital Hospital to develop an emergency disaster plan while issuing similar directives to the medical director of Federal General Hospital, district health officer of Islamabad and the medical superintendent of TB Centre in Rawalpindi.

A copy of the letter sent to these officials is available with Pakistan Today and it reveals that the heads of these hospitals have been told to ensure the availability of 20 per cent of the total bed strength, 25 per cent of the medicine stock and the round the clock availability of in-charges of blood banks, who should also make sure that the hospitals have 500 empty blood bags while 300 full bags.

Besides formatting an emergency disaster plan, the heads have also been directed to start an Advanced Life Support (ALS) training course for nurses and other paramedical staff in collaboration with Rescue 1122.

“Disaster management corners should be established in trauma centres/emergencies where all the required items, including IV drips, antibiotics and bandages, should be available and the continuous supply must be ensured if required,” the letter reads. The letter also instructed the uninterrupted supply of oxygen cylinders and anaesthesia must be ensured and the duty roster of all senior consultants should be doubled in the emergency department round the clock and other health workers should reach the emergency department within half an hour of calling. The letter also directed that medical officers, nursing, paramedical staff and allied hospital professionals must also be doubled to cover emergency services in case of any disaster.

Furthermore, the letter directed that the leaves of all employees who are currently on leave should be cancelled and they should be asked to report back to the hospital immediately. The mechanical equipment of all hospitals should also be checked to ensure it is in working condition, the letter added.

The heads have also been directed to ensure that the operation theatres are functional round the clock. They have also been directed to ensure that all hospital committees and patient welfare societies are made fully functional so that regular meetings can take place and all registered blood donors must be contacted through SMS service to ensure their availability in case of an emergency.

All heads have also been directed to nominate a focal person not below the rank of BS-19 to keep liaison with the ministry.