PMA demands liberal spending on women healthcare

KARACHI: Pakistan Medical Association PMA has demanded provision of proper healthcare facilities to women, besides raising their social status and safeguarding their rights.

Addressing a press conference here Wednesday at the PMA House1 Dr. Idrees Adhi President PMA Karachi, Dr. Aziz Khan Tank of College of Family Medicine, Dr. Imtiaz Malik of NCMH, Shela Sugru, Dr. Nighat Shah of SOGP and Dr. Shershah Syed of PNFWH said this year they are celebrating the International Women Day with heavy heart because of dismal healthcare facilities for women in Pakistan. They said despite the injection of billions of rupees in healthcare sector from international donors, NGOs and the provincial and federal governments they could not see a significant change in the life of women in Pakistan.

They said our maternal death rate is still unacceptability high 377/100000 and pregnancy associated morbidity is causing severe hardship to millions of women. They are suffering from condition like pelvic pain and fistula.

They said violence against women is on the rise. Karokari and honour killing is rampant in rural populations. Militants are destroying girl schools. Thousands of girls are working as domestic worker with minimal salary. They are victims of physical violence and sexual abuse.

It is depressing to note that despite the claims from policymakers, women are victim of violence torture, injustice and unnatural deaths because of pregnancy and violence, they regretted.

The PMA leaders noted that all political parties are giving lip service to women rights. Practically no one has political will to solve the problems faced by women.

“As health professionals we strongly believe that government and political parties should come forward and show a political will to address this healthcare issues on emergency basis.”

They said the government is spending billions of rupees on non-productive projects giving no importance to maternal health and women right issues. It is spending money with cheap slogans to bribe people to win the elections. The politicians are showing no sympathy to poor women who are dying in silence.

They urged for a women friendly healthcare system and a make change in present health priorities. “Instead of spending billions of rupees on medical universities and medical colleges in construction and shopping of gadgets we need more qualified and competent nurses and midwives. We are producing thousands of good for nothing doctors and having a part time faculty members in these institutes on heavy salaries and perks. They are not helping healthcare system or saving mothers in any hospitals. There is a need to invest in midwives for their best training on scientific basis like other countries.”

The PMA leaders demand that a new career structure is required for midwives. We need at least 0.1million midwives to work in community at cities and 85000 villages of Pakistan, they noted.

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