KHYBER AGENCY - The Agency Headquarter Hospital Landi Kotal in Khyber Agency has been without medical superintendent (MS) for the last two months.

Lack of responsible head in the hospital has created favourable conditions for irresponsible doctors to remain absent from their duties, complained local tribal people while talking to The Nation on Tuesday. They said three months ago Dr Rauf was appointed as MS in the hospital but he left his duty and went back as protest following alleged clashes with political tehsildar of Landi Kotal. Since then the hospital has been witnessing the absence of MS, locals and officials of health department said. Syed Dawa Jan, an Afghan citizen and hailing from Bacha Mena, Torkham, said he is a patient of tuberculosis and has repeatedly visited the hospital but in the absence of an responsible head many doctors do not attend their duty. "I am a poor man and even cannot afford Rs 200 as fare to visit the hospital," he lamented. Another patient Samar Jan said the doctor has suggested him an ultrasound but unfortunately the ultrasound room is closed and the specialist doctor has been absent for the last few days. He also alleged that specialist doctor for ultrasound in hospital was treating patients in his private clinic.

A health official of hospital unveiled that only 14 doctors out of 23 are present which caused great problems for patients who come from remote areas and Afghanistan. He further informed that most of the doctors remain absent from the duty.

In-charge Landi Kotal Hospital, Dr Baseer Shinwari, told this scribe that four doctors are attending the medical training while the rest of them have promoted to grade18, who will soon join the duty in hospital. He also confirmed the absence of ultrasound doctor and said he had received a lot of complaints against him. He said two doctors of mobile hospital namely Shahid Khan and Adnan Khan have been posted in the hospital but they have not joined the official duty from the first day.

The hospital is permanently lacking gynaecologist, dental surgeon, general surgeon, pathologist, radiologist, anaesthetist and medical specialist, he said. He said the available doctors in hospital are performing their duties effectively and each doctor was examining around 250 to 300 patients daily.