Health initiative


Last week, as I was exiting Karachi on my way to Gharo, I witnessed a Shahzore truck rolling over in a bid to save an old woman crossing the National Highway near Toll Plaza.

Many people got severely injured and there was no hospital nearby. We stopped as well to provide whatever help we could. Somebody called an ambulance and in very little time we saw Sindh Rescue and Medical Services ambulances reaching the location. Unlike typical ambulances in Karachi, we were surprised to see how well equipped these ones were and they even had trained paramedics.

They immediately started treating all the nine victims very professionally like providing necessary first aid to them including IV fluids, injections, splints, spine board and cervical collar. After the providing immediate aid, ambulances started shifting the injured to hospitals for further emergency care.

I later found out that this service is a result of partnership between Sindh government and Aman Health. I was really impressed by how they acted in a timely and professional manner. It is very unfortunate that such ambulances are limited in number. Government should prioritise this to add more ambulances so that such services are available at least in highly populated urban areas and major highways of Sindh.




Mystery gas


The death of at least 14 people in a mysterious gas leak near the Keamari area in Karachi is a human tragedy that could have been prevented. On Sunday, the people in Keamari’s Railway Colony felt sick, apparently after inhaling poisonous gases. The leakage continued throughout Monday and in 24 hours the death toll had reached eight while the number of unconscious patients also increased to over a hundred.

The response from the Karachi Port Trust authorities was laggard and most people were left to their own devices to face the menace of this mysterious gas leak. Karachi is Pakistan’s largest port and handles dozens of ships and thousands of containers on a daily basis. This misfortune has happened accidently at midnight, Over the decades, because of lapses in town planning and negligence of house building control, the residential areas and warehouses have come in close proximity.

The unsuspecting denizens of these areas have no protection against fumes emanating from store houses and underground storage facilities. There appears to be no check on health, safety, and environment protocols on the companies that operate in that area, neither do they offer any warning in case of an emergency. In this case, there has as yet been confirmation on the nature of leakage or the toxicity and nature of the fumes.

It is unfortunate that the concerned authorities spring into action only when something tragic has happened or is about to happen. It is a standard practice the world over that air and seaports have well-equipped hospitals as emergency treatment centres in case of any unforeseen mishaps. This recent tragedy should serve as a wake-up call to all concerned authorities to put their house in order and prevent such tragedies from happening again.



Shortage of masks


On Wednesday the 26th of February, Pakistan detected two patients of Coronavirus. One in Federal Administration and the second case was detected in Karachi. After this news broke out, the demand for masks has led to its prices getting high. A mask that was being sold at seven rupees is now being sold for fifty rupees. Whereas the N-95 mask is being sold at RS 400 to RS 500 instead of 60 rupees.

Medical store owners say that only one mask is being sold to one person, as supply is off for a week. One shopkeeper informed that masks were being imported from China, the supply shut down from China has lead to the product shortage in the market.

Meanwhile, citizens are also taking precautionary measures to combat the epidemic, and a mask is a very effective tool to prevent the virus.

There are reports of a shortage of masks but the government says that there is no need to panic and the shortage of face masks is under control.