Patients at stake as hospitals hit by hepatitis injections shortage


KARACHI: Shortage of injections at Hepatitis Centers of Hepatitis Prevention & Control Program (HPCP) Sindh Program has hit the project hard, putting lives of thousands of patients suffering from hepatitis at risk in Sindh province, sources at HPCP told PPI on Thursday.

They said shortage of pegasys and interferon injections for hepatitis patients at Hepatitis Centers in Karachi and other parts of Sindh had continued and provincial health department had badly failed to supply required quota of injections to the centres.

Sources said pharmaceutical companies had challenged the purchase of pegasys injection procedure in court owing to which provincial health department was unable to supply required quota of injections to the centres.

They said there were acute shortage of pegasys and interferon injections in Hepatitis Centers in Civil Hospital Karachi, Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, Qatar Hospital and Sindh Government Hospital Liaquatabad and other government hospitals, which had compelled patients to leave treatment.

Thousands of registered patients throughout the Sindh province have been visiting the public hospitals on regular basis to get injections, but they were being asked by doctors to buy injections from private medical stores as supply of injections could not resume yet.

The shortage of Pegasys and interferon injections in public hospitals had badly affected program performance as treatment of hepatitis patients is very costly and majority of patients could not afford it.

They feared that that lives of patients suffering from different types of hepatitis would be at risk if the shortage of medicines continues in future in public hospitals.

Focal Person Hepatitis Prevention and Control Program Karachi Dr Ghulam Mujtaba Memon, when contacted, said supply of interferon injection might start from Monday throughout the province.