Islamabad - The Higher Education Commission (HEC) would spend over Rs2,210 million in the coming 3-4 years to promote research on health and medical sciences in the country.

For this purpose, the HEC will provide funding to public sector universities for research infrastructure development, establishment of hi-tech research labs and training of professional in specialised areas.

These facilities would be established in three institutions, including Dow University of Health Sciences, Karachi, Khyber Medical University, Peshawar and International Centre for Chemical and Biological Sciences, Karachi. The Central Development Working Party (CDWP) has already approved HEC’s proposal.

“The tropical diseases such as malaria, leprosy leishminasis and viral diseases hepatitis, tuberculosis, dengue fever etc have been affecting masses in the country and besides proper treatment facilities, there is a need to conduct indigenous research on these health issues,” said a press release.

The HEC has also planned to develop a core team of researchers in allied health sciences. Under the scheme, existing research facilities  at International Centre for Chemical and Biological Sciences, University of Karachi will be strengthened by provision of modern research laboratory equipment.

Similarly two research institutes, one in pancreatic surgery and translation and other in diabetic and endocrinology will be established in Khyber Medical University, Peshawar.

The CDWP has also approved a scheme of Dow University of Health Sciences, Karachi to enhance its capacity to enrol more research students in dental and oral health.

The Pakistan Medical and Dental Council statistics show that presently

around 12,500 dental surgeons are registered in the country, one dental

surgeon each for 14,000 peoples in the country as compared to WHO standard of one dental surgeon per 5,000 peoples.

The specialists in oral health are only 1000 in Pakistan. PMDC data

depict the acute shortage of graduate and specialists in dental and oral health sciences. The facilities at Dow University of Health Sciences will enhance its ability to enroll more postgraduate students at the campus.