KHYBER: Services at district headquarters hospital in Landi Kotal remained suspended on Monday as paramedical staff locked the entire health facility to seek initiation of inquiry against the medical superintendent of the hospital for his alleged wrongdoings.

Arranged under the banner of Grand Health Alliance, doctors, paramedics, nurses, Class-IV employee, the staff of expanded programme on immunisation (EPI) and even workers of political parties and members of civil society also participated in the daylong protest and chanted slogans in support of their demands.

Addressing the protesters, leader of paramedics Mujeebur Rehman, Dr Awais, Dr Inayatullah and Khiyal Madar alleged that Medical Superintendent Dr Jamshed had unlawfully withheld eight-month salary of the EPI staff without any prior legal notice and did surrender the said amount to health department.

They alleged that due to the highhanded policies of the medical superintendent, a number of specialist doctors had either gone on long leave or get themselves transferred to other hospitals that negatively impacted the health delivery system in the hospital.

Mujeebur Rehman said that most patients in need of different types of surgeries visited private hospitals owing to shortage of better facilities at the hospital operation theatre. He said that the store of the hospital was also short of basic medicines as even a syringe was not provided to needy patients.

The leaders of the protesting health workers alleged that despite sanctioning of a huge amount of funds for purchase of necessary medicines for the hospital medicine store, very little was provided to needy patients.

“Health facilities of even a civil hospital are not provided at this Category-A hospital despite tall claims about improvement by the medical superintendent,” they said.

The protesters demanded of the directorate of health services for an in-depth accountability of the medical superintendent along with his immediate transfer from the current post.

Published in Dawn, September 19th, 2023

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