A delegation of Ministry of Culture & Tourism, Republic of Turkey called on Additional Chief Secretary (ACS) Punjab Shamail Ahmad Khawaja at Civil Secretariat, Lahore today. The Turk delegation was headed by Chief Architect, Ministry of Culture & Tourism, Republic of Turkey Mrs. Nermin Uzunali accompanied by Conservation Experts of Cultural Heritage Ahmet Canseven and Ahmet Hakan Evsen. Matters regarding technical assistance from Turk experts in restoration and conservation of famous sites of archeological importance located in Lahore and other parts of the province of Punjab. Additional Chief Secretary Punjab Shamail Ahmad Khawaja informed the Turk delegation that the people of Punjab are proud custodians of many great civilizations from day back to five thousand years in the history. It is our national obligation to conserve this rich cultural heritage for which the government of Punjab had been collaborating with Norway, Italy and Germany, but the Republic of Turkey has more similarities and commonness with Pakistan as regards cultural heritage of both the brotherly Islamic states. This is why the government of Punjab is desirous to seek technical support from Turkish archeologists in conservation and restoration of ancient fresco paintings present on the huge “Picture Wall” of Shahi Qila Lahore and restoration work of mosaic work in all the historical buildings and havelies located in the walled city of Lahore. It was agreed upon during the meeting that a memorandum of understanding will also be signed with the Turkish delegation to extend technical support in establishing Metallurgical and Structure Material Analysis Laboratory in Lahore which would help conserve the sites of archeological importance. Director General Walled City Lahore Authority (WCLA) Kamran Lashari, Director General Archeology, Punjab Ijaz Ahmed, Deputy Secretaries S&GAD Ms. Noorish Sabah and Ms. Saba Asghar Ali were also present in the meeting besides a senior representative of Lahore Museum.
Punjab Minister for Specialized Healthcare & Medical Education Kh. Salman Rafique has said that due to the collective efforts and concrete steps taken by the government departments, dengue situation is under control in Punjab. He said that so far 162 dengue patients have been reported in Punjab during the last nine months in which the patients from other provinces and abroad also included. He said that only 26 patients have been reported in Rawalpindi district however, due to the favorable atmosphere for dengue breeding the concerned departments and the surveillance teams have to increase their field activities for eliminating hotspots and larvae siding in the high risk areas. He directed the health authorities to record separate data of dengue patients from KPK, Kashmir, Gilgit & Baltistan. He was presiding over a meeting to review dengue situation in Commissioner’s Office Rawalpindi. Besides Minister for Primary & Secondary Health Kh. Imran Nazir, Commissioner Talat Mehmood Gondal, Prof. Waseem Akram, Additional Commissioner Revenue Aqeel Ahmed Khan, Officers of district administration, CEO Health Rawalpindi, Director Social Welfare, officers from Rescue 1122 and other concerned departments were also present in the meeting. While addressing the meeting, Minister for Primary Health Kh. Imran Nazir said that dengue has become a national issue as this disease has been spreading all over the country and every citizen should play his/her role in the public welfare activities and keep their houses and surrounding neat and clean and remove stagnant water. Prof. Waseem Akram appreciated the efforts of Rawalpindi administration and the Health Department due to their hard work people of Rawalpindi are safe to a great extend however, present efforts should be continued with the same spirit for a sustainable control on dengue. Commissioner Rawalpindi Talat Mehmood Gondal reviewed the performance reports of different departments critically and directed them to ensure complete implementation on the dengue SoPs and enhance their activities to overcome the problem. He said that no negligence would be tolerated in this regard.
As per the directions of Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif, a 4-days rigorous training program on public sector procurement management was conducted by LUMS in collaboration with PPRA to enhance the capacity of high profile government officers. Around 35 senior government officers including Commissioners, Additional Secretaries, Deputy Secretaries, various public officials, and SSPs from Police Department also attended the training session. During the training program, lectures on various aspects of public procurement were delivered on areas pertaining to procurement planning, bidding documents, bid evaluation and contract management. Managing Director PPRA, while welcoming the participants, briefed that PPRA has formulated this training program at LUMS, and a 2-days training program at PPRA office. In this regard, PPRA also sends teams to districts. This training program at LUMS is highly specialized for top and mid-level government officers. The aim is to enhance their capabilities concerning public procurement. In this regard, rule 4 of PPR 2014 says that while making any procurement, a procuring agency shall ensure that the procurement is made in a fair and transparent manner, the object of procurement brings value for money to the procuring agency, and the procurement process is efficient and economical.
First two bone marrow transplantation procedures at Children Hospital has been successfully carried out. Children Hospital Lahore is the first public sector hospital across the country where bone marrow transplantation launched. It was announced by the Dean Children Hospital Prof. Masood Sadiq and Medical Director Prof. Ahsan Waheed Rathore in press conference after successful completion of bone marrow transplantation of two children i.e. Bilal two years and Aashir four years of age, at Children Hospital, here today. The real sisters of both the children have donated their bone marrow for their younger brothers. Prof. Ahsan Waheed Rathore said that it has become possible only due to the personal interest of and the attention paid by the Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif with a vision to provide best healthcare facilities to the people of Punjab. Prof. Rathore further informed that both the donors and recipients are stable and their health is improving. He informed that Chief Minister Punjab has appointed Project Director Dr. Tahir Shamsi who is the pioneer of bone marrow in Pakistan and the Director of National Institute of Blood Diseases, Karachi (NIBD). He said that the doctors of Children Hospital have written new history of medical in Pakistan by conducting successful bone marrow transplantation in public sector hospital. Dr. Tahir Shamsi, while responding to a question informed that the procedure carried out after tissue matching of real siblings and after giving anesthesia 200-250 ml bone marrow obtained from the bones of the donor and infused in the recipient patient and the patient kept in infection free atmosphere for seven to eight weeks. He informed that after infusion bone marrow starts producing fresh blood. Dr. Shamsi further informed that the successful rate of this treatment is about 70 percent in all over the world. He informed that so far 2000 bone marrow transplantation have been carried out in Pakistan and all were in the private sector as before the Children Hospital Lahore there was not a single such facility available in Pakistan in public sector. Prof. Ahsan Waheed Rathore said that since the bone marrow transplantation facility is available in Children Hospital therefore many lives of children could be saved. Prof. Masood Sadiq informed the media that Children Hospital has become a centre of excellence and we are starting training program in bone marrow transplantation for the doctors, nurses and paramedical staff with a plan to introduce this facility in other hospitals of Punjab such as Nishtar Hospital Multan and Bahawalpur. Prof. Masood Sadiq and Prof. Ahsan Waheed Rathore congratulated the whole team of doctors, nurses and paramedics, who are specially trained for this procedure, on their success. The team leader Dr. Mewish Faizan informed that this way of treatment is helpful for the treatment of thalassemia, A-plastic anemia and cancer and those patients whose immunity is weak can also be treated by bone marrow transplantation. She expressed determination that her whole team would continue their dedicated efforts for conducting these procedures at Children Hospital. The other members of medical team were included Dr. Saima Farhan, Dr. Nasir Bukhari, Dr. Arifa, Dr. Mansoor Mazari, Dr. Rukhsana and the nursing staff. On this occasion, Mukhtar Ahmed father of Ashir who has got bone marrow transplantation lauded the Punjab government’s efforts and especially thanked to the Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif and the doctors of Children Hospital for providing such a costly treatment facility to his son free of cost.
On the direction of Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif, Minister for Specialized Healthcare & Medical Education Khawaja Salman Rafique and Minister for Primary Health Khawaja Imran Nazir would reach Rawalpindi on Wednesday to hold meetings with the Chief Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner Islamabad and other high officers to ensure coordinated efforts to control dengue in Islamabad and improving the dengue larva reporting and patients geo-tagging mechanism. Joint strategy would be evolved to overcome the dengue in Rawalpindi and Islamabad areas.
It was informed in the meeting of cabinet committee on dengue chaired by the Punjab Minister for Specialized Healthcare Khawaja Salman Rafique at Committee Room Civil Secretariat, here today. Besides, Provincial Minister Primary & Secondary Health Kh. Imran Nazir, Additional Chief Secretary Shamail Ahmad Khawaja, Ms. Lubna Faisal MPA, Lord Mayor Lahore Col. (R) Mubahar Javed, Secretary Specialized Healthcare Najam Ahmed Shah, Secretary Primary Health Ali Jan Khan and Secretaries, Additional Secretaries of other concerned departments, convener DEAG Prof. Faisal Masood, officers from Punjab Information Technology Board and Special Branch were also present in the meeting. The Deputy Commissioners and Chief Executive Officers Health of other districts participated in the meeting through video link. Additional Director General Dengue Control Dr. Farrukh Sultan gave briefing regarding the dengue situation in the province. He informed the meeting that geo-tagging of dengue larva and the patients on PITB dashboard is not being properly carried out from Islamabad and there was a need for vigorous dengue surveillance activities to overcome the dengue in Islamabad and Rawalpindi. Both the Ministers would also discuss the reporting system of dengue patients from the hospitals of Islamabad and the role of Capital Development Authority in dengue control activities.
Kh. Imran Nazir directed the local government departments to enhance their dengue related activities with the cooperation of elected local bodies representatives. He said that Chairmen of union councils and Lord Mayors would also be taken on board. Kh. Salman Rafique revealed that the activities of various departments a bit slow. He directed that the concerned departments should enhance their anti-dengue activities as the slight negligence could upset the situation. Kh. Salman Rafique took notice of the non-redressal of complaints and sore points reported by the Special Branch. The Minister directed that displeasure letters be sent to the concerned departments in this regard. He directed all the departments to prepare their presentations as the Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif may call dengue meeting on any day.