islamabad - Negligence on part of Ministry of Capital Administration and Development Division (CADD) led to the closure of Outdoor Patient Department (OPD) of Bone Marrow Transplant Unit (BMT) at Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS), an official said on Tuesday.

Earlier, the transplant section was put under the lock when CADD and hospital administration failed to decide the fate of Italian Funded project established in 2010 and handed it over to PIMS administration in 2016.

An official said that nearly 500 thalassemia patients are in line for their healthcare to begin while CADD and hospital administration have put the future of the facility at stake.

An official said that after the closure of transplant unit, the staff at the facility locked the OPD because their salaries had not been paid while CADD was considering hiring new staff.

The official said that some of the patients under treatment have been sent to the inn of the hospital while new admissions are not being taken. 

“Medical staff including doctors and nurses is knocking the doors of CADD ministry and hospital administration for nearly a month for the release of their 10 months salaries,” said official.

The official said that hospital administration convinced the staff of BMT to start the transplant of the patients with the assurance that their issues will be addressed soon. However after admitting the patient, they left them at the mercy of CADD ministry.

“A senior official of CADD insulted the staff of BMT in his office when the issue was raised before him,” said the official.

Meanwhile, CADD instead of releasing the salaries of staff issued a notification to PIMS to send requisition to Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC) for recruitment of new BMT staff.

The notification available with The Nation said that “Requisition to be submitted to FPSC to all BS-16 and above posts on regular basis and fresh contract appointments may be opted after obtaining No Objection Certificate (NOC) from FPSC due to exigency of service for the sake continuity as regular appointment may take consideration time. PIMS is requested to take further necessary action and immediately send provisions to this division on request of format of FPSC for onward submission to FPSC”.

On the other side, nearly six families signed a petition for continuity of the facility and pleaded before Chief Justice of Pakistan to take notice of the closure of the facility where their children are under treatment.

Names of the parents include Mohammad Irfan, Gulnaz Bibi, Jamal Khan, Irfan and Samiullah. Thalasemia is a common disease in Pakistan caused by inter-family marriages. Right nowm more than 500 children are on waiting list for BMT, which is the only remedy available for thalassemia children. The negligence and maladministration of PIMS is also at the verge of closure, because non-payment of the salary of regularization of nine doctors who have been working here.

 Chief Justice of Pakistan has been requested to take suo-moto notice of the issue and save the lives of those suffering from this disease.   

Spokesperson PIMS Dr. Waseem Khawaja said that the facility is open and a patient named Abul-Razi received a transplant a few days ago. He added that children suffering from the disease are also being registered at the facility.

However he didn’t comment on the closure of OPD of the facility.

Additional secretary CADD Jamal Yousaf talking to The Nation said that BMT established as a project which has a fix time limit and after that it is closed.

He said that government has a policy for regularization of the employees in such cases that it provides relief of 5 marks and age relaxation in the FPSC test.

“However, there is no space in law to regularize anyone without going through the legal process,” he said.

He added that employees sometimes continue their services despite ending the project that they will be regularized on the posts.

Additional Secretary also said that the employees of BMT will appear in the competitive test and get concessions when the posts are announced.