KARACHI  -   Hospitals in Pakistan are being run by excellent physicians and surgeons who are finest in the their fields of medicine and surgery but most of them don’t have management degrees or training to deal with growing influx of patients and their attendants as well as their own staff, which is resulting in chaos and mismanagement at healthcare facilities.

“Public sector hospitals should be run by their chiefs and medical superintendents in such a manner where they could have medical treatment for themselves and their families instead of sending them to private hospitals,” Indus Hospital Network CEO Prof Abdul Bari Khan said while speaking at a launching ceremony of Institute of Learning Excellence (ILE) here at a local hotel on Wednesday.

He said that the Institute of Learning Excellence (ILE) would hopefully be an innovative solution to train healthcare providers, CEOs and medical superintendents in effectively running their health institutions and to provide maximum facilities to patients, their attendants and even the healthcare providers. According to him, doctors are taught everything at their medical schools and varsities except management. In the public sector, they are made medical superintendents after certain years of experience but they don’t have the experience to run large health facilities, which result in chaos and sufferings for both patients and healthcare providers.

Prof Abdul deplored that there was no system at public institutions for the capacity building of doctors who are chosen to head the medical and health facilities and often their inexperience in the field of management result in problems for patients and their own staff including doctors, nurses and paramedics.

“This is one of the reasons why our healthcare system has failed to deliver. We don’t put right people in the right place, we don’t appreciate the people who are doing their jobs sincerely and effectively and we are putting wrong people to do the jobs which they are not capable to perform”, he maintained.

Calling for management degrees or some kind of management training mandatory for the heads of medical institutions and health departments, he said that the ILE would fill the gap and would arrange leadership and management trainings for the healthcare providers to improvement healthcare delivery in the country.

Eminent patient-safety expert and Professor at Wayne State University School of Medicine, USA Dr Paul Barach deplored that millions of deaths were occurring at health facilities annually due to poor quality care while 20 percent of patients discharged from the hospitals were being readmitted with few days, which could have been avoided.

“An epidemic of unhappiness has gripped the healthcare sector in entire world including Pakistan, where 40 to 50 percent healthcare providers are depressed due to long working hours and exhaustion, work-related stress, poor working conditions and unrealistic expectations from their superiors and people around them,” he said and called for transforming healthcare facilities by improving working conditions for the healthcare providers.

He said he was not aware of the state of mental conditions of doctors, nurses and paramedics in Pakistan but keeping in view the growing number of patients at each and every hospital, studies should be carried out to ascertain the mental condition as many of them hide their depression, stress and signs of burn-out, which is neither good for them nor the patients they see at the healthcare facilities.

Citing examples of aviation and oil industries, he said focus should be on the better working facilities and professional development of the healthcare providers and hoped that the ILE would play an important role in transforming healthcare sector with the help of top leaders and experts of the field.

Director of the ILE Dr Zakiuddin Ahmed said that the ILE would be an institution which would facilitate healthcare providers in professional development and acquiring leadership training, which would help them in effectively running large health facilities.

The launching ceremony was also addressed by leading healthcare providers while eminent physicians including Prof Zaman Shaikh, eminent cardiologist Dr Bashir Hanif, Abdul Latif Shaikh, Haroon Qasim, Syed Jamshaid Ahmed and others were also present.