KARACHI    -   Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has decided to establish satellite centres of National Institute of Child Health (NICH) in all the divisional headquarters and in the first phase its satellite would be established in Mirpurkhas.

He took this decision on Monday while presiding a meeting to resolve all the outstanding issues of NICH here at the CM House.

The meeting was attended by Chief Secretary Mumtaz Shah, Adviser to CM Murtaza Wahab, Principal Secretary to CM Sajid Jamal Abro, Secretary Finance Najam Shah, Secretary Health Saeed Awan, Director NICH Syed Jamal Raza, Additional Secretary to CM Fayaz Jatoi and other concerned officers.

The chief minister was told that from 2011 only status quo had been maintained. Neither the fresh recruitment had been made nor promotions had been given to suitable qualified professionals and nor equipment had been added. Therefore, the NICH was facing serious problems to improve its services further. The NICH has a 1035 sanctioned strength of medical and para-medical staff against which 674 are working which shows a shortfall of 361 staff members.

The chief minister then and there approved promotions of 43 qualified and experienced professionals and also approved new posts of 150 staff members, medical and para-medical, and directed Secretary health and Finance to have a meeting with NICH director to work out a detailed SNF so that news positions could be created for efficient functioning of the institute. 

The chief minister said that he wanted the NICH on the pattern of NICVD should work under an independent board of directors. The board of directors would take all its administrative and financial matters and run the satellite centers which would be established on war footing in every divisional headquarters.

He added that the first NICH satellite center would be established in Mirpurkhas so that it would work efficiently in the entire division, with a particularly focus on Tharparkar to control mother and child nutrition issues there.

The chief minister was told that the NICH has an old generator with lower capacity and need a MRI machine. The chief minister approved purchase of new generator and a MRI Machine and directed health department to move a summary for formal approval.

The chief minister also directed the finance department to release the budget of NICH so that it could meet all its expenditures, including maintenance of equipment, medicines and others.

The NICH is a 500-beded hospital and the chief minister directed its director to submit a detailed plan for its expansion. It was pointed out that the NICH has a very limited staff accommodation facilities and most of the houses were occupied by unauthorized people. At this the chief minister directed Chief Secretary Mumtaz Shah to vacate NICH staff accommodation from unauthorized people through district administration.  The chief minister said that he was committed to provide best medical facilities to each and every child of the province.