ISLAMABAD: Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government has released Rs 122.368 million funds for the first-ever trauma, burns and reconstructive surgery centre in Hayatabad Medical Complex, Peshawar— which indicates that the long awaited and much needed reconstructive centre might ultimately see the light of the day, soon.
The KP Health Department has issued the funds to the C&W department to ensure timely completion of the Peshawar burn centre.
According to the release order, a copy of which is available with Pakistan Today, “I am directed to enclose herewith a copy of the Section Officer (Dev-1) Finance Department letter No So (Dev-1) FD/2-14/2017-18/Burn & Trauma dated 06-09-2017 on the subject noted above and to place the funds amounting to Rs. 122.368 million released by the Finance Department in respect of project “Burn and Trauma Center, Peshawar” at your disposal for the incurrence of expenditure during the current financial year 2017-18 on the approved items of the PC-1s subject to observance of all codal formalities”.
A senior provincial official told Pakistan Today that the KP government is taking a great interest in health related projects and massive funds have been released in this regard so far.
He said that the government is determined to complete the burn centre during its current tenure by June next because it is a much-needed project. He further added that this project could also be used as political leverage by the ruling party in the next election.
It is pertinent to mention here that the United States Agency for International Development agreed to provide Rs1.6 billion for the completion of the burns centre, after the federal government’s refusal to provide the promised funds.
The official also said that no fund has been released by the federal government for the several projects started by KP’s provincial government.
The provincial government started constructing a specialised burns and reconstructive centre in Peshawar a couple of years back, but the centre is still not functional even after three years, due to insufficient funds.
The completion of the project would help provide state-of-the-art facilities to the people requiring emergency care.
There is a desperate need for the centre because every year at least 8,000 patients with burn injuries are brought to Peshawar from different districts of KP and the adjoining tribal areas, but they have to be referred to Islamabad since no such facility is available in the province. The completion of the centre will provide services to the people coming from the whole province as well as Afghanistan and other provinces.
At present, there is only one state-of-the-art, 20-bed burn centre located at the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS), Islamabad where burn patients are treated free of cost. However, the patients are often refused admission to the facility because of non-availability of the beds.
A senior doctor told Pakistan Today that most of the burn victims lose their lives because of the non-availability of timely treatment and inadequate facilities in the province.
Hence, he said that the completion of the facility could drastically increase the survival rate of burn victims in the country.