KARACHI - Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has vowed to make Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre (JPMC) a world class facility by establishing an institute for cancer costing Rs6 billion.

The 12-story tower at JPMC will have the ability to diagnose and treat all types of cancer under one roof absolutely free of cost.

This he said while presiding over a briefing session held at the conference room of Radiology which he visited on Wednesday. He was accompanied by Health Minister Dr Sikandar Mendhro, Principal Secretary to CM Sohail Rajput and others.

The meeting was attended by Minister of Health Dr Sikandar Mendhro, Sohail Rajput Principal secretary to CM and chairman Patients Aid Foundation (PAF) Zahid Bashir, Chairman executive committee Mushtaq Chapra, Executive Director Dr Seemin Jamali, Shabbir Diwan, Peer Mohammad Diwan and other members of PAF. Prof Tariq Mahmood made a presentation on the existing facility created by PAF and its future requirement to make JPMC – Karachi for a world class facility as envisaged by the chief minister under Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode. Under the plan, a 12-story complex for Cancer Institute is being established at JPMC having the ability to diagnose and treat all types of cancer under one roof absolutely free of cost.

Professor Tariq said the total cost of this project would be Rs6billion half of which is being arranged by PAF for civil works. On this the chief minister announced giving remaining Rs3 billion to complete the project. “I am committed with you and with my people to provide them best health facilities, particularly to cure the cancer at early stage,” he said.

Syed Murad Ali Shah was also briefed about OPD and surgical complex which are also nearing completion.

Syed Murad Ali Shah said that he allocated Rs425 million for the purchase of equipments in the current budget. “This would be sufficient to operationalise eight operation theatres of the complex and I would finance you further if more funds are required,” he said. It may be noted that the PAF is also arranging Rs 700 million to complete and equip the 10 operating theatres on the top floor under PPP arrangement.

Syed Murad Ali Shah lauded the efforts of PAF, especially for the plans of the under construction surgical and OPD complex and pledged to provide additional Rs 700 million for the OPD and surgical complex and Rs 3 billion for the Institute of cancer at JPMC for the years 2018 – 2020.

Mushtaq Chapra complimented the far sightedness of the chief minister in making bold decisions for the betterment of people of Sindh. He added that the Sindh government through the inspiring leadership of Murad Ali Shah has shown great promise to provide quality health care to the people of Sindh.

The CM also instructed Prof Tariq to enlarge the scope of services of this cancer institute to parts of the province through satellite units.

Earlier, the chief minister offered a dua for marking the opening of the Cyclotron and PET CT facility. Later the CM was shown the new Cyclotron, Cyber-knife Robotic surgery, parts of the Radiology and other areas established under successful public private partnership basis. In the end, the ED JPMC presented a shield to the CM.

Later, talking to media after the event, Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said that the new Cyclotron, Cyber-knife centre have started functioning and today a formal opening has been made.

He proudly said that this is the first ever facility in the country where cancer patients are treated free of cost. In this facility, patients from 12 different country, including Bahrin, Afghanistan and other countries come for treatment.

“This is a costly treatment which costs a patient around Rs5million to Rs10 million which is unaffordable but under PPP mode we have made it possible here in the premises of JPMC,” he said. He added 44 percent of the under-treatment patients belongs to Sindh, 34 percent to Punjab and rest from KPK and Baochistan.

He said that the process to recruit more than 6000 doctors has come to a final stage. Once the recruitment is completed most of the hospitals presently facing shortage of doctors would start functioning to their full strength.

Replying to a question, he said Mayor of Karachi has not read the budget book. In Karachi over 317 schemes are going to be completed in the next financial year because they have been fully funded.