LAHORE – The Punjab government has decided to start dengue larva surveillance from February 15 to check mosquito breeding during weather transition period.

The decision was taken at meeting held here Friday with the chief secretary in the chair.

Health Secretary Arif Nadeem directed officers of Lahore and other districts to initiate dengue larva surveillance with the cooperation of concerned departments. He said that instructions have also been issued for completing the process of training of staff regarding detection of larva. Moreover, instructions have been issued to principals and medical superintendent of teaching hospitals to set up High Dependency Unites for treatment of patients. Director General of Health Punjab was directed to constitute a team for checking HDUs and submit a report in this regard.

Instructions were also issued to hold meeting of Dengue Expert Advisory Group (DEAG) headed by Prof Faisal Masood before February 15 for updating guidelines for treatment of dengue patients and issuing these guidelines to all hospitals. In the light of the instructions of Chief Secretary Punjab, all concerned departments will remain alert for controlling the breeding of mosquito for prevention of dengue outbreak and will work in close coordination so that this menace could be checked at early stage.

HEALTH WORKSHOP: Experts have called for equipping the medial students with essential knowledge and skills from the behavioural sciences so that they could ‘recognize, understand and effectively respond to patients as individuals, not just to their symptoms’.

In a workshop held here at the University of Health Sciences (UHS) on Friday, noted psychiatrist and varsity’s chairman academic committee Prof M H Mubbashar said that psychological, social, biological and behavioural factors had been shown to influence disease risk and illness recurrence. He was of the view that such mind-body interactions and behavioural influences on health and disease were important concepts to which medical students should be exposed.

“Students should also graduate with an understanding of how their background and beliefs can affect patient care and their own well-being; how they can best interact with patients and their families; how cultural issues influence health care; and how social factors, such as health policy and economics, affect doctors’ ability to provide optimal care for their patients”, he maintained.

The workshop was facilitated by Commandant Armed Forces Institute of Psychiatry, Brig Dr Mowadat Hussain Rana. Prof Mubbashar further said that UHS introduced the subject of behavioural sciences in medical and dental curricula to master the students in the ‘art’ of medicine and to give crude scientific knowledge a ‘humane face’.

He express his concern that despite the efforts of the University, some medical colleges were not giving due weightage to the teaching and training of students in the subject of behavioural sciences.  The participants of the workshop, which included heads of the department of behavioural sciences from all public and private sector medical colleges, highlighted the issues related to the teaching and assessment in behavioural sciences especially the callous attitude of the administration of some private medical colleges towards regular staffing in the department.

It was recommended that a regular check be kept on the private medical colleges and action should be taken against those institutions which show ’ghost faculty’ on papers only.

It was also decided that there should be more workshops to standardize the teaching of subject of Behavioural Sciences in all medical colleges.