LAHORE - Adviser to Chief Minister on Health Kh Salman Rafiq said that the government would provide all resources for extending scope of Thalassemia Prevention Programme.

Speaking at a seminar at Fatima Jinnah Medical University (FJMU) yesterday, he said that special centres have been set up for safe blood transfusion.

FJMU Vice Chancellor Prof Fakhar Imam, faculty members, doctors, thalassemia patients, their parents and people from all walks of life attended the event arranged by Punjab Thalassemia Prevention Programme (PTPP) in connection with World Thalassemia Day.  Kh Salman Rafiq said that government was implementing a special programme of checking all diseases including thalassaemia as without preventing diseases, all resources could become short for treatment of patients. He said that cooperation of PITB for the success of thalassaemia prevention programme and monitoring system was commendable.

PTPP Project Director Dr Shabnum Bashir informed that there were 60,000 registered patients of thalassaemia in Pakistan while 10-12 million were carrier. She said that lack of preventive measures like screening of couples before marriages were causing annual addition of 6,000 thalassemia patients.

She said that blood test of girl and boy before marriage could save coming generations from inherited diseases. She said that regional centres have been set up at Lahore, Rawalpindi, Multan and Bahawalpur with facilities of blood test, gene consultation, diagnosis before birth, test before marriage and DNA lab.