JPMC considers ending association with SMC
KARACHI, Aug 28: To get their premises "depoliticised", authorities at
the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre (JPMC) are considering a plan to end
their association with the neighbouring Sindh Medical College (SMC), said
sources in the major public sector hospital on Monday.
They said people
at the helm had expressed the view that although it might create enormous
problems both for the college and the hospital, such a move would help improve
the law and order situation at the hospital where thousands of patients were
attended to daily.
Since Aug 15, the federal government-run JPMC has
experienced two major clashes within its precincts. Two students of the
rehabilitation and physiotherapy school have been killed and many wounded in the
clashes between the two rival groups which seems to have set up their bases the
The hospital business remained suspended for about five days after
the incident as each student group tried to establish its
After the first incident of killing and injuries on Aug 15,
the controlling authority of the SMC, the Dow University of Health Sciences
(DUHS), had closed its hostel facilities on boy students, but a repeat of the
gory incident that claimed yet another life of a JPMC student on Aug 25 caused
concern among the doctors community, calling for fool-proof arrangements and
check on influx of students at the hospital from outside.
The SMC, which
was made functional under the provincial government in 1973, does not have
attached teaching hospital like the other public medical colleges and its
students receive their clinical training for at least three years at the JPMC
and two other institutions located in the vicinity of the college. The hospital
also entertains about 250 house-officers graduating from the SMC.
source said that sometime back also the federal government had been requested by
the hospital to devise a detachment of the province-run SMC as there was a plan
to raise a federal health university at the JPMC.
A senior doctor said
that the students of physiotherapy, medical technology or nursing colleges, run
by the JPMC, were not the threatening factors, but it were the students of the
medical college and outsiders in the guise of students who frequented the
hospital and remained there unmonitored vitiating the hospital
The solution lies in de-linking of the hospital from the SMC
and its hostel, said the doctor, adding that the process needed a long-term plan
for phasing out the SMC students.
Another source said the hospital could
also shift its various schools and colleges away from the premises or
investigate the candidates' credentials before granting them
The administration is considering all options to ensure a
tension-free, smooth and congenial atmosphere for the staff and patients and
their relatives coming from all parts of the province and country, the source
After the suspension of patient management activities for about two
days, patients and their relatives were allowed to enter the hospital, amidst
tight security, on Monday.
Heavy contingents of Rangers and police were
deployed to check the entry of politically-motivated students and alleged
hooligans and to rise to any mishap and control the law and order situation,
said a source.
However, the day remained peaceful at the JPMC, while the
adjacent SMC remained closed for students. The hospital authorities have also
ordered the closure of the schools of medical-technology and physiotherapy for
an indefinite period.
A doctor at the emergency and casualty department
said the reporting of patients was slow in the morning, but the situation
improved after midday. Hospital staff in the presence of law-enforcement
personnel also removed graffiti from walls and installations in the hospital on
The executive director of JPMC, Prof Rashid Jooma, said the
overall attendance of doctors and paramedical and technical staff was close to
usual on Monday and the OPDs functioned as per schedule. He said the provincial
government had taken necessary security measures at the hospital and he
personally felt that it would take some more time to ease the
Replying to a question, Prof Jooma said that the JPMC had
recommended to the federal health ministry a review of the relation between the
hospital and the medical college.
Meanwhile, the Pakistan Islamic Medical
Association, Karachi, has demanded that the Sindh High Court take notice of the
ugly developments that took place at the JPMC recently.
A spokesman for
the association said that it was all due to the incompetence of the hospital
administration that two students lost their lives in the presence of security
The association noted that the current tense situation at the
hospital was the result of ineffectiveness of the law enforcement agencies and
as such the courts should intervene. Dawn
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|Updated: 14 Oct, 2014|