ISLAMABAD-Federal capital hospitals are on high alert to provide medical assistance to mourners and tackle any emergency situation, officials said on Monday.

Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) and Polyclinic hospitals are on high alert with deployment of additional staff and special arrangements in the emergencies.

A letter circulated by PIMS administration in the hospital said that it was circulated for information of all concerned that PIMS will remain on high alert during 9th and 10th Muharram. It also added that all clinical and non-clinical departments and supervisory staff of PIMS are requested to prepare and issue and emergency duty roster in this regard.

The circular said that the departments of neurosurgery, orthopaedic and general surgery are requested to depute maximum staff for on-call duty. The letter also said that however, the institute will remain closed for routine duties. Dr Sharjeel Zaheer chief CMO/Clinical Coordinator Emergency was nominated as focal person to deal with the emergency situation.

PIMS spokesperson Dr Waseem Khawaja informed The Nation that around 900 staff including doctors and paramedics will be on duty during Muharram holidays.

He also said that hospital has increased the bedding capacity in emergency and doubled the blood stock and reserved the ambulances with the Muharram processions.

“Surgeons and physicians are on high alert while operation theatres have been also given extra staff and arrangements for extra operations if needed”, he said.

Dr Waseem also said that hospital had made an emergency plan to meet any untoward situation. The number of medicines and surgical equipment has been reserved for the emergency disaster plan.

Meanwhile, spokesperson FGS Polyclinic hospital also said that hospital is on high alert during two days of Muharram.

Informing about the measures taken during the two days of Muharram said as the polyclinic is located near the 9th Muharram procession route so it has made special necessary arrangements for the medical assistance.

He said the Outdoor Patients Department (OPD) will be closed for 2 days but the emergency department will be functional during Muharram holidays, where doctors will be available for 24 hours.

He said that five ambulances of the hospital would be ready to provide medical help to the procession participants and it will move along with the procession, till it concludes. He also said that the number of medicines and blood bags in the hospital have been increased to meet any emergency situation. He said that along with increasing the medicine capacity, number of staff including nurses and paramedics have been also increased for these two days.

Dr Shareef also said that senior administration including executive director and deputy executive director of the hospital will also remain on duty during Ashura. He said that weather is pleasant and there is less chance of heat stroke for the mourners this year, but hospital has kept more than 100 blood bags in its reserve and extra beds have been also arranged in case of emergency.

The 9th Muharram procession commences from G-6 and ends at the ‘imambargah’ following the specified route by the city administration.