Lack of hepatitis medicine spell trouble for patients


KARACHI: The medicines used to treat hepatitis C are not available at Hepatitis Centers run by Hepatitis Prevention & Control Program across the province for several months, as the health department has failed to deliver drugs at these centers.

Thousands of newly screened hepatitis C patients have been put on waiting all over the Sindh province by consultants due to shortage of medicines in the Hepatitis Centers.

The newly registered patients at Hepatitis Centers, including Dr Ruth Pfau Civil Hospital Karachi, Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Center (JPMC) Abbasi Shaheed Hospital and other government hospitals, are not being provided with adequate medication.

The Hepatitis Centre at Dr Ruth Pfau Civil Hospital Karachi which was registering nearly 40 to 50 new patients every day has been put on hold due to shortage of drugs.

Hepatitis C patients in Hyderabad, Nawabshah, Mirpurkhas, Sukkur and other districts of Sindh have been advised by their doctors to buy medicines from private medical stores rather than from hepatitis centers in hospitals.

Shortage of drugs has adversely affected the program performance as the treatment of hepatitis patients is very costly and a large number of patients can not afford treatment costs.

Media Coordinator, Hepatitis Prevention & Control Program, Sindh, Khurram Khan was not available for comments.