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KARACHI: Mayor Karachi Wasim Akhtar on Sunday said that over Rs5 billion has been earmarked in the new fiscal year's budget 2020-21 for provision of better health and medical facilities to the people of Karachi.

He said coronavirus testing facility at Abbasi Shaheed Hospital has increased the people's confidence in Karachi Metropolitan Corporation. We are trying to expand facilities at Karachi Institute of Heart Diseases, Karachi Institute of Kidney Diseases, Landhi Medical Complex, Sobhraj Maternity Hospital and other hospitals under administrative control of KMC to provide free of cost medical facilities to poor people.

He passed these remarks while talking to a meeting pertaining to medical facilities at KMC hospitals. He said the people of Karachi are left alone as the hospitals are overcrowded during the pandemic.

The Mayor was of the view that the common people cannot afford high fees of private hospitals. He said that separate ward for Covid-19 patients have been established at Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, having facilities of 18 ventilators and ICUs.

Akhtar said that a filter clinic has also been established at Landhi Cardiac Emergency Centre which is catering the residents of Korangi and Landhi. "Just like the global situation, Karachiites are also facing unprecedented circumstances as the people have been hit hard by the coronavirus. Business activities have come to a halt and many people went jobless that increased depression and anxiety amongst them," he added while urging the need for facing the pandemic as a Nation.

He said that many countries have already defeated Covid-19 but situation in Pakistan is still not ideal. He asked Director Medical Services Dr Beerbal Gainani to make KMC hospitals functional around the clock and ensure provision of all required equipments to doctors and paramedical staff.

The Mayor also directed that doctors' presence should be ensured while ordering strict action against absent doctors and paramedics. "The entire nation is counting on doctors in this situation," he added.

Akhtar said that the provision of better health facilities to the people is amongst their priority and they have to serve the masses in their limited resources. Lethargy in this regard would not be tolerated, he warned.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020