LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister (CM) Shehbaz Sharif paid a surprise visit to the Pakistan Kidney and Liver Transplant Institute (PKLI) immediately after his return from Saudi Arabia on Tuesday.
He went to different sections of the institute and inspected various facilities being provided to the patients there. He also inquired after the health of the patients and asked them about the medical facilities provided to them.
The patients thanked the chief minister for establishing the wonderful facility. The patients coming from Lahore, Mandi Bahauddin, Kasur and other districts of the province said that they have been treated well at the newly constructed facility.
Shehbaz Sharif also talked with the doctors, nurses and the paramedical staff and said that this institution would emerge as a state-of-the-art facility for the treatment of ailing humanity. He advised the medical staff to serve the patients with commitment and passion.
He appreciated the strong passion of doctors, surgeons and physicians who left their lucrative jobs abroad to join the PKLI, adding that the passion shown by the qualified staff was praiseworthy.
The chief minister also presided over a meeting held in the hospital to review the timeline for the completion of leftover assignments of the first phase. He issued necessary directions to the officials concerned for early completion of the second phase of the project.
He said the Punjab government, PKLI and the Punjab Infrastructure Development Authority have jointly performed this job and the first phase had been completed well in time due to the hard work of all the people attached with this project. Now you have to complete the second phase by showing the same kind of commitment and hard work, he added.
Shehbaz Sharif directed the officials concerned that electricity failure should not occur in the facility at all and alternate arrangements should be maintained. The steering committee should personally manage all the steps needed in this regard, he added. He also directed the persons concerned that they should burn the midnight oil for the completion of the second phase while paying complete attention to cleanliness.
Later, while talking to reporters, the chief minister said that this hospital would emerge as a role model institution in the region. After my visit to Saudi Arabia, I have come directly to the hospital and have held a meeting to review the ongoing assignments of the hospital, he added.
He said that the leftover assignments of the first phase would be operationalised soon while the second phase would be completed by March 23. We are trying to start the kidney transplant from this month while the liver transplant facility would be started from March, he informed.
The chief minister also said that deserving patients from across the country would be treated free of cost and the Punjab government would bear the expenses of such patients who could not pay for organ transplant, medicines or tests.
The Punjab government had spent more than Rs1.5 billion on the treatment of deserving patients suffering from kidney and liver diseases during the last nine years, he said, while adding that these patients were earlier sent to China, India and other countries, but now they would be treated in the PKLI free of cost.
Later, Shehbaz inaugurated the approach road to the newly constructed facility. He was informed on the occasion that Badian Road to PKLI link road would ensure easy access to the institute and would connect the different localities in the area.
This road had been completed in a period of 20 days and was a part of the project starting at Nawaz Sharif Interchange and ending at Hadiara Road. Punjab Health Minister Salman Rafique, chief secretary, Planning and Development chairman, Lahore Development Authority director general and others were also present on the occasion.