Islamabad-Senate Standing Committee on National Health Service & Regulations (NHS) on Monday expressed concerns over the performance of Pakistan Medical & Dental Council (PMDC) and asked for improving mechanism of the body.

The meeting was chaired by Senator Sajjad Hussain Turi while Senator Azam Khan Swati, Senator Ateeq Sheikh, Senator Nouman Wazir Khattak, Senator M. Hamza, Senator Ayesha Raza Farooq and officials from National Institute for Health (NIH) and PMDC attended the meeting.

“The Medical and Dental Council (Amendment) Bill, 2017” and “The National Health Care Bill, 2017” tabled by Senator Azam Khan Swati were discussed in meeting held. Senator Azam Khan Swati said that the PMDC is working without any mechanism and doctors in the federal capital are issuing certificates without registration. He alleged that millions of rupees are illegally being earned by issuing fake medical certificates.

Senator Dr Noman Wazir said that the PMDC’s registration system is not up to the mark and the council should issue certificates to doctors in one week time. Senator Ateeq Sheikh, while raising the issue of free medical treatment to underprivileged patients, said that people are being provided medical treatment through third party.

The committee also expressed concerns over appointment of new head of Human Organs Transplant Act (HOTA). Senator Ateeq Sheikh remarked that dual nationality holder person has been appointed as HOTA head who was also involved in financial embezzlements. The committee condemned ministry for not providing official documents in the meeting.

The committee directed the NIH officials to take measures to increase production of vaccines at the National Institute of Health (NIH) so that citizens could get vaccines at affordable prices. The committee also directed to take steps to protect the land of NIH from the land mafia.

Additional secretary health briefed the committee that there is fine of  Rs100,000 and six months imprisonment for violation of PMDC rules. He also said that recently 5,000 doctors were awarded registration certificates in 10 days only.

The additional secretary also informed the committee that the government’s healthcare bill was finalised and after its approval from cabinet division and it will be sent to the Prime Minster for approval.

DG NIH informed the committee that implementation of the recommendations of the committee has been initiated and advertisement of vacant seats in the institute has been issued.Chairman Committee Senator Sajjad Hussain Turi directed the PMDC to conduct hospital visits in routine instead of visiting after 05 years.

The committee adjourned the Senator Azam Khan Swati PM&DC bill for further consideration.

The committee also recommended inclusion of a senator in the NIH board. The chairman committee also directed the ministry officials to give detail briefing on HOTA in next meeting.