LAHORE - Poor condition, insufficient equipment and unavailability of basic facilities in free dispensaries and basic health units (BHU) of the City District Government Lahore are declining rapidly, a survey conducted by TheNation revealed on Monday. As many as 150 free dispensaries of City District Government are functioning in various areas of the City including those BHUs of nearby villages which fall in the jurisdiction of Lahore district. Despite availability of sufficient funds, allocated by the CDG and provincial government, Health Department has failed to provide quality medical instruments and establishing medical laboratories in these BHUs and free dispensaries so far. Moreover, the department has also failed to ensure availability and presence of qualified allopathic, homeopathic doctors and experienced hakeems in these free dispensaries, who were recruited by the health department and quacks are performing duties in the absence of qualified doctors, which is another reason behind the decline of dispensaries. However, such quacks are contributing to various diseases among the patients due to lack of experience and medical skills. In fact, the health department recruited these quacks as dispensers and helpers. Due to lack of medical skills and basic knowledge of medical practice they unnecessarily giving injections to the patients and using used syringes, which is a major cause of spreading various dangerous diseases such as HIV, Aids and Hepatitis. It was witnessed that the number of patients is decreasing in such so-called free dispensaries with the passage of time due to imposition of some strict conditions for the patients. National identity cards have been declared essential for getting treatment in these free dispensaries. In this regard, a notification has been issued by the Health Department. Soon after the implementation of such fees and condition of ID card, the number of patients has been decreased because poor patients perhaps changed their mind to visit these BHUs and free dispensaries for availing governments free of cost medical facility, said an official of Health Department of CDG on condition of anonymity. He further said that those patients who often avail medical facility in these dispensaries also seemed reluctant to visit again due to certain reasons because they are fearing of spread of dangerous diseases and improper methods of treatment used in these dispensaries. The number pf patients has declined up to 20 to, he concluded However, District Officer (II) Dr Shabir Ahmad said that availability of insufficient funds was the major reason behind insufficient medical facilities in these dispensaries. He said that city government allocated only Rs8.4 million in previous budget for these dispensaries and with such amount; it was impossible to ensure provision of quality facilities.