Peshawar   -    Former Federal Minister for Health and Advisor WHO Headquarters, Dr Zafar Mirza chaired a strategic planning meeting at Peshawar Medical College (PMC) on Wednesday.

The meeting was jointly organized by Al-Khidmat Health Foundation and Prime Foundation. Prof Dr Hafeez-ur-Rahman Dean of Health Sciences, PMC and Chairman Al-Khidmat Health Foundation moderated the deliberation. The meeting was attended by various national and international delegates physically and online via the zoom link.  

The participants apart from Dr Tariq Cheema (USA), Dr Saadia Malik (AAPS Europe), Dr Fozia Alvi (Canada), Dr Ahmed (Turkey), and Dr Amatullah Zarrin (PIMA) included the professors and senior faculty members of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Public Health and Mental Health from Peshawar Medical College, Lahore and Islamabad. The purpose of the meeting was to deliberate in detail about the problems faced by the flood that affected Pakistan in general and specifically pregnant ladies.  

Dr Zafar Mirza guided and led the consultation process and prompted the delegates to develop a comprehensive inventory of such ladies through the involvement of the LHWs, LHVs, midwives, and skilled and traditional birth attendants. 

He stressed the need to identify ways and means for building, refreshing, and enhancing the capacity of all tier birth care providers in dignified and safe birthing practices throughout the cycle of pregnancy right from antenatal through natal to postnatal care.  

It was of paramount importance to carefully document all the steps of care in local languages to act as pregnancy care SOPs under the WHO and UN guidelines. 

Dr Mirza further said that the services need to be provided in a complementary and more cooperative than the competitive manner in synergy with the health system partners in the public and private health sectors. It is only this way that the duplication and waste of resources can be avoided and efficiency can be achieved.  

He also urged the delegates to think out of the box, innovative and technological solutions, for instance establishing a helpline as a mobile phone was in use by most of the flood victims to date. He concluded with the assurance that he will try his level best to further reinforce the strategic planning by involving the field experts and engaging the international development partners. 

Before this Dr Mirza visited the Prime Institute of Public Health where he was briefed by the Director and Program Officer of the PIPH about their health and development projects in collaboration with the UN, international agencies, and the department of health. He appreciated the public health services profile and efforts of Prime Foundation as managed by PIPH.