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Event Title: Senator Muhammad Hamayun Mohmand, Chairman Senate Standing Committee on National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination Presiding over a Meeting of the Committee at Parliament House Islamabad

Event Date: 2023-07-13

Meeting of Senate Standing Committee on National Health Services Regulations and Coordination was held at Parliament House on Thursday with Senator Dr. Muhammad Humayun Mohmand in Chair.

The Senate Committee was briefed about the precautionary measures taken by District Administration and Health Department for the Prevention of Dengue in Islamabad Capital Territory. Zaeem Zia, DHO Islamabad, informed that Health department with the collaboration of District Administration has visited around 182,112 hotspots in rural areas and 64,743 hotspots in urban areas, besides that section 144 has been imposed in Capital Territory and wrongdoers have also been fined in order to control the spread of dengue virus. DHO claimed that the cases of dengue virus in 2023 will be certainly low as compared to 6,415 cases in 2022. The Chair Committee deferred the deliberations and decided to take up the matter at the end of December in order to make the comparative analysis of 2023 with the previous year.

While discussing the current status of Mother Child Hospital which is being constructed in PIMS with the collaboration of Japan. Special Secretary for NHSR&C stated that the civil work has been completed and machinery will be installed by the end of July,2023. However, the general equipment worth around 36 lacs could not be procured because of government ban on imports. The Chairman Committee directed the Finance Ministry to uplift the ban on the import of essential items, so that the necessary equipment for Mother Child Hospital could be procured at earliest.

Furthermore, the matter of MRI machines in PIMS was deliberated upon. Officials apprised LC's have been opened for the procurement of MRI machines with the efforts of Finance Ministry and State Bank of Pakistan. However, the first MRI machine would be installed by the 6th of September, officials maintained.

Moreover, as to matter of financial embezzlements in 250 bedded 'Isolation Hospital and Infectious Treatment Centre Islamabad' which was initiated by NDMA in COVID-19 and eventually handed over to Ministry of Health. Mirza Nasir ud Din Mashhood Ahmad,Special Secretary  NHSR&C, apprised that ministry has no prior knowledge of any financial irregularity, however, Federal Audit is conducting special audit of the hospital and the report will be presented before the standing committee once it's concluded.

The Senate body has also taken up the matter of Khyber Institute of Child Health and Children Hospital Peshawar. Senator Prof. Mehr Taj Roghani, mover of the matter, stated that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is only the Province having no Child Care Hospital and the said project have to be completed in 2016 but, unfortunately due to paucity of funds it has not been completed yet and delayed in fund allocation have doubled the project cost. She maintained that construction of Child Care Hospital could be initiated, if federal government release their promised share of funds. The Chairman Committee directed the Finance Ministry for timely provision of funds for the Child Hospital.

Additionally, Senator Prof. Dr. Mehr Taj Roghani highlighted the issue of breast feeding and stated that bottle feeding is the primary reason of diarrhea and nutrients deficiency in the children. She informed that 100 Billion rupees has been spent annually on artificial milk and in order to combat this growing trend a awareness should be launched for young couples. She also suggested that Fedral Government should made legislation for breast feeding on the lines of 'Sindh Protection and Protection of Breast Feeding and Young Child Nutrition Act,2023'.

The meeting was attended by Senator Prof. Dr. Mehr Taj Roghani, Senator Rubina Khalid, Senator Jam Mahtab Hussain Dahar, Senator Bahramand Khan Tangi, Senator Fawzia Arshad, Senator Sardar Muhammad Shafiq Tareen, Special Secretary NHSR&C Mirza Nasir ud Din Mashhood Ahmad, District Health Officer ICT Zaeem Zia, Deputy Commissioner ICT Irfan Memon and other senior officers of relevant departments were also in attendance.