PESHAWAR: Khyber Medical University Teaching Hospital will become operational during the next four months to provide treatment and mental health services to diabetic patients along with screening facilities for breast cancer and management of stroke, according to official sources.
The 200-bed hospital will start operations on the main campus of the university in Hayatabad Township. It will be the first hospital of its kind offering mental health services to patients suffering from diabetes so that they could overcome their trauma during the prolonged treatment.
KMU Vice-chancellor Prof Ziaul Haq told this scribe that Pakistan had about seven million diabetic patients, who faced health issues such as obesity and amputations along with encountering mental problems that adversely impacted their overall health conditions. An estimated 450,000 leg amputations carried out nationwide annually, he added.
He said that the hospital would offer psychiatric and psychological services to patients to avoid amputations through timely management and ensure that their life styles were not disturbed. “Patients will get nutritional services in light of their diagnosis to prevent their diseases because proper dietary regime can safeguard them from host of issues,” he added.
The health facility will treat diabetic patients and manage people affected by stroke
Prof Zia said that they were focusing on prevention and management of non-communicable diseases (NCDs). “Presently, people die of strokes. We have planned to put in place modern equipment to ensure that the affected people get treatment within four hours. The patients with brain haemorrhage will have brighter chances of survival,” he added.
He said that brain haemorrhage patients would not only recover rapidly but t would also be able to live normally if they were provided with treatment facility within four hours of the attack. “Currently, such services are available in Rawalpindi and other cities where patients cannot be transported within due time from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa,” he said.
Prof Zia said that for stroke management, the hospital would have the services of radiologists, vascular surgeons and neurologists to give prompt response so that the patients could get rehabilitated at the earliest.
He said that they had 19 constituent institutes with 340 faculty members and 60,785 students offering 67 programmes in medical sciences owing to which the hospital was needed to provide them with practical services and benefit patients.
“Breast cancer has been causing more problems and often the women end up with removal of their breasts through surgery. Through early detection, we can prevent breast surgeries and ensure the treatment of the affected women,” said the KMU vice-chancellor.
The hospital with a basement of two floors, to be completed at a cost of Rs1.2 billion, will offer free mammography services to women. Family physicians and medics working in rural health centres and basic health facilities will get regular training regarding the NCDs and they will refer patients for specialised services to the hospital.
“Diabetic patients are more vulnerable to tuberculosis but through linkages with local physicians, this problem can be overcome to a great extent as management of chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases is also part of the hospital,” said Prof Zia.
He said that the hospital would be a role model with evidence-based management of patients. “Our students and MPhil and PhD scholars will pursue research on the prevalence of diseases among the local population,” he added.
Prof Zia said that research and clinical services at the hospital would go side by side and they would get a clear picture of health problems prevalent in different areas of the province and the same would be shared with policymakers.
“Patients from the neighbouring Afghanistan will also get facilities at subsidised rates at the hospital to be run by an independent professional management board while overall supervision will be carried out by the KMU syndicate,” he said.
Published in Dawn, September 19th, 2023