LAHORE - Unavailability of implants at Jinnah Model Pharmacy has practically put to halt major surgical interventions at the second biggest tertiary care hospital in Lahore - Jinnah Hospital - for the last 10 days.

Acting medical superintendent Prof Arif Tajjamal has imposed a ban on use of implants purchased from pharmacies outside the health facility, suspending emergency and scheduled operations at both Ortho Units, as the hospital pharmacy is lacking such items.

On Jan 18, the MS directed the Chief Operating Officer of Jinnah Model Pharmacy to arrange implants after consultation with the heads of both the Ortho Units and at the same time passed on the message to the consultants and Operation Theatres that items purchased from the outside could not be implanted to patients. The Model Pharmacy has yet to ensure availability of implants, forcing the patients to wait for unspecified period that could result in permanent disability.

For the last 10 days, the sole activity at operation theatres is dressing of wounds and putting plasters for hairline fractures on leg or arm.

As implants are not provided free, the patients are getting the same from the market but refused by surgeons for not purchased from Jinnah Model Pharmacy as per the clear instructions of the administration. For the last 10 days, hapless attendants are moving from MS office to the operation theatre for surgery their patients but to no avail.

The MS tells the attendants that it is up to surgeons to use implants purchased from the market. The surgeons, however, have just one reply that “written and not verbal approval is necessary to use these implants in surgery”.

“On getting a list of necessary items to be used in surgery from duty doctors, I purchased plate and nails from a store outside of the hospital as these items were unavailable at the hospital pharmacy. But the doctors refused to use these items for the reason that these were not purchased from the hospital pharmacy,” said the attendant of a 60-year-old patient, Nazeeran Bibi.

Despite the woman needed immediate Hip joint surgery to avoid disability, her attendant said the operation was postponed.

Attendant of another 11-year-old patient, Sahil, narrated a similar story. “My nephew needs leg surgery. Due to unavailability at hospital pharmacy, I purchased nails and other items from the pharmacy outside of the hospital. Later on, I went to the MS office where I was told that it was up to surgeons to use these items. On my instance, the MS writes ‘allowed’ without affixing his signatures. The surgery was postponed as merely a tick was not enough for doctors at operation theatre,” he told The Nation.

Almost the same story was narrated by attendants of Ramzan, 35, Babar Hussain, 24, Sara, 80, and Sajida Bibi, 35. They said they purchased interlock nails, plates and other items from the stores outside the hospital due to unavailability at the Model Pharmacy. But they couldn’t move the hospital administration an inch though made a litany of complaints.


513 nurses take charge at LGH

As many as 513 nurses selected by Punjab Public Service Commission have assumed their duty at Lahore General Hospital yesterday. Post Graduate Medical Institute Principal Prof Ghiyas-un-Nabi Tayyab said that lectures will be arranged for newly recruited nurses on daily basis to sensitise them about health policies, infection control, campaign against dengue, polio and other diseases, discipline and attitude with patients and attendants. Educational documents of newly selected nurses will be verified from relevant educational boards at the earliest, he added.

These nurses have been recruited through PPSC for the first time in the history of the country. The PGMI principal said that the step was aimed at discouraging culture of nepotism and recommendation and to uphold merit and transparency.

The provincial government recently approved Rs9,000 per month health risk allowance for nurses, Prof Ghiyas said and hoped that new batch of nurses would prove to be a precious asset for LGH by virtue of their excellent performance, professional commitment and nice attitude.