Medicines supply to Balochistan's only cancer hospital stopped

Syed Ali Shah:


QUETTA: Medicines supply under the Balochistan Endowment Fund (BEF) to Balochistan’s only cancer hospital was stopped, doctors and patients said. For the last two months, the hospital is not getting medicines under the BEF, Dr. Feroz Khan Achakzai, a senior doctor of the CENAR hospital Daily Quetta Voice.

Daily, over 100 cancer patients are coming and they go back in frustration without getting medicines, Mr. Achakzai said. The cancer disease continues to spread in Balochistan and it has claimed scores of precious human lives during the last few years. “I sold jewelry and everything to buy medicines for my ailing wife”, Bahauddin 47, a white-bearded man from Balochistan’s Dalbandin area told this scribe.

Dozens of cancer patients and their attendants were waiting outside the reception of the CENAR hospital to get the official medicines. However, the hospital administration informed that the stock of the medicines was finished two months back and there was not a single tablet.

“We are registering more than 8000 new cancer patients every year”, Dr. Achakzai informed. He said that currently, more than 2,000 cancer patients were under treatment at the Bolan Medical Complex Hospital and the CENAR hospital.

The patients complain about costly cancer medicines. “I am spending more than Rs.50,000 per month for my medicines”, Hidayatullah, a young man with a bushy beard lamented. He said that he spent all his money and belongings to buy the costly cancer medicines to save his life.

In CENAR hospital, most of the patients belong to the downtrodden class since middle-class and elite-class people go to Karachi or the Shaukat Khanum memorial hospital in Lahore for medical treatment. “We have no money to go to Lahore and Karachi”, Hidayatullah said.

Despite repeated attempts, Quetta Voice was not able to speak to the officials to get their point of view about stopping the medicines to the only cancer hospital of Balochistan.

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Quetta Voice is an English Daily covering all unfolding political, economic and social issues relating to Balochistan, Pakistan's largest province in terms of area. QV's main focus is on stories related to education, promotion of quality education and publishing reports about out of school children in the province. QV has also a vigilant eye on health, climate change and other key sectors.