ISLAMABAD – Despite Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani’s orders for early establishment of a liver transplant centre at Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS), the project could not be materialised so far.

The Centre for Liver Disease and Organ Transplant at PIMS was expected to start functioning by the end of August 2011.

The executive director PIMS Dr Mehmood Jamal claimed that liver transplant unit would start functioning during the current financial year adding that they have prepared for surgeries prior to liver transplant. Moreover, Intensive care unit (ICU) has been established and a new operation theatre besides an old one is also equipped with modern equipment.

Dr Mehmood Jamal said that “ERCP” and “RFA” would be started in the first week of the May. PIMS sources said that PIMS is considering hiring the services of the Royal College of Surgeons, which would help in imparting training relating to liver transplantation at the hospital.

Sources said that Project Director Prof Dr Aftab Mohsin has got back after purchasing equipment worth Rs 250 million for the said project. It should be mentioned here that the Centre would also provide free of cost treatment to hepatitis C and B patients.

The Centre for Liver Disease and Organ Transplant will be the first facility of its kind in the country as and when its starts function and people will not have to travel abroad for costly treatment of liver diseases. However the t delay in making it operational is a question mark on project.