KARACHI, Feb 15: A dedicated unit for the children suffering from urological and nephrological problems was opened earlier this week in the new building of the Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation (SIUT).
Located on the second floor of the building - known as the Dewan Farooq Medical Complex - the ward has 45 beds in all. Even though no person has been officially notified as its chief, the unit is supposed to be looked after by Dr Sajid Sultan, it was learnt on Thursday.
According to a doctor on duty, the unit is equipped with the needed radiological equipment. Staff adept at taking care of children with kidney-related problems have been deputed to run the unit.
The doctor said most of the admitted children had congenital ailments. Underscoring the need for early detection of the problems, he said: "The age of a patient is relevant to the interventions or medication strategies to be adopted. That's why we feel that early detection is vital".
Answering a question, he said even though children were being examined regularly in the SIUT's outpatient department since 1998, the hospital did not have a separate unit until Monday.
Prof Adibul Hasan Rizvi, the SIUT's director, explained that due to the great burden of patients of all ages, the hospital needed to be expanded rapidly. "That's why we have had to set up a separate paediatric unit for urology, a separate one for nephrology and another one for oncology and so on."
Turning to the issue of foreign collaboration, Prof Rizvi said: "Right from day one, we have had experts who came here or vice versa." He said two experts - Mr Philip Ransley and Miss H.K. Dhillon of the United Kingdom - had so far visited the SIUT four times.
The two were known as experts in the area of paediatric urology and the SIUT's staff had learnt a lot from their experiences. Mr Ransley is actually considered to be the person who got paediatric urology as a separate discipline.
Meanwhile, the SIUT has been expanding rapidly lately. Construction is already continuing apace at the site of an oncology unit which is slated to be built at a cost of Rs300 million, which has been donated by a philanthropist.
It also plans to build an Institute of Transplantation and Biological Sciences. For this purpose it has already acquired a piece of land measuring 100 acres at a cost of Rs25 million in Kathore, which is 40km from Karachi.