ISLAMABAD: In a move apparently aimed at preventing an adverse court order, the government has decided to replace the Pakistani Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) flag with the national flag on the Insaf Health Card. Additionally, the card has been renamed to ‘Quami Sehat Card’.
The spokesman for the Ministry of National Health Services (NHS), Sajid Shah, claimed the move was taken because Prime Minister Imran Khan opposed using public money for self-projections.
It is worth mentioning that during the tenure of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, Khan had criticized the use of images of PML-N leaders in government advertisements and also filed a petition in the Supreme Court for which Punjab’s chief minister at the time, Shahbaz Sharif, had to deposit around Rs country.
When the PTI was in power, a DPR committee rejected the use of the PTI flag and party names [Insaf] on the Insaf Health Card. Later, a case was filed with the Islamabad High Court, questioning the name and flag of the ruling party on a health card issued by the government.
Officials said the service was provided to more than 8.4 million families
According to a statement issued by the NHS Ministry on Thursday, the government has taken important and revolutionary steps to change the name and design of the health card.
The new name for the health card is the ‘Healthy Quami Card’ with a design that reflects Pakistan and its people. This new card will replace all existing health cards after the expiration date is over from the district of Azad Jammu and Kashmir.
“The Quami Sehat Card project is not only one of the largest social health protection initiatives but also a game changer when it comes to accessing quality healthcare services without financial constraints. Registered beneficiaries of this program can benefit from free indoor care via the Qaumi Sehat Card from any empanel hospital across Pakistan using inter-district portability facilities, ”he said.
An NHS ministry spokesman, while speaking with Dawn, said the program has provided services to more than 8.4 million families, and targets to reach 12.5 million families nationwide.
“The services available include open heart surgery, stenting, cancer management, neurosurgery procurement, burn management, accident management, dialysis, intensive care management, delivery, cesarean section and other medical / surgical procedures. More than one million people have visited the hospital to date and more than 300,000 have been treated for various diseases, “he said.
He said that as per the prime minister’s directive, there was a strict monitoring mechanism that was maintained through a feedback call from beneficiaries, which showed a 97 percent satisfaction rate for the services provided by the hospital on the panel.
PPP questioned the decision to eliminate PMDC
Sherry Rehman, leader of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) parliament in the Senate, on Thursday questioned the NHS ministry’s decision to seal off the Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC) building, formerly known as the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC).
“It is surprising how unlimited power has been exerted on private dental colleges to set fees and for arbitrary admissions. The centralized admission policy is now abolished, “he said.
“Don’t forget, the PMDC dissolution was initially unconstitutional. It was rejected by a majority vote last year. A regulation was canceled as soon as a resolution against it was passed by one of the chambers of parliament under business rules, “he said in a statement.
“In all these failures, Pakistani medical colleges will now lose international certification. Instead of taking control and more responsibility for fixing a faulty system, the federal government is doing the opposite, ”said the senator.
“Thousands of doctors are waiting for permanent and temporary diplomas since last year. Instead of facilitating them, the federal government has even sealed off PMDC, ”he regretted.
It is worth mentioning that PMDC employees have not been removed from service; they have stopped working.
Senator Rehman, who is the vice president of PPP, said: “It is a shame that efforts were made to irrelevant parliament and run the country through a presidential regulation. A new era of ranking nepotism is underway, even in highly specialized fields such as healthcare, where compromises should not be made on testing and certification standards.
“On another level, we should at least facilitate PMDC employees rather than leaving them unemployed at times of high unemployment and extreme inflation.”
Published in Dawn, September 25, 2020
to request modification Contact us at Here or [email protected]