Saturday, 24 May 2014

Case of Emergency Disaster Management for Karachi

by: Bilquis Rehman
General Manager, ICR & Advocacy Department


“Staff of the emergency medical team should be technically equipped and trained to save the lives, to do the most for the most”, said Dr. Samad Billoo, at a seminar on ‘Management of Medical Emergencies in Karachi - An Expert Opinion’, organized by HANDS Pakistan and HANDS International, on Wednesday, April 30, 2014, at Movenpick Hotel. Mr. Roshan Shaikh, Secretary Relief and Rehabilitation, Government of Sindh, was the chief guest at the event.

The seminar was organized to focus on the expert opinion from Dr. Samad Billoo, on existing practices and challenges involved in medical emergencies as part of daily occurrences across the country, Karachi being prone to natural and manmade calamities, is badly suffering due to lack of learning, sharing, regulations and systems. He highlighted the importance of understanding “Structured Response Methodologies” for disaster and emergencies. Dr. Shaikh Tanveer Ahmed, Chief Executive, HANDS, gave the welcome address and presented HANDS approach on emergency relief to the audience.

In this regard, the key stakeholders of Karachi medical emergencies were invited to present their medical emergencies approaches. Mr. Salman Shah, DG Provincial Disaster Management Auhtority, Sindh, Ms. Joan Dodman, USAID Health Specialist, Prof. Saeed Qureshi from Civil Hospital, Dr. Junaid Razaque from Aman Foundation, Mr. Ubaid Hashmi from Al-Mustafa Trust, Mr. M. Ramzan Chhipa from Chhipa Welfare Association, Dr. M. Shahid from Indus Hospital, Dr. Seemi from Khidmat-e-Khalq Foundation and Mr. Abdul Aziz from Al-Khidmat Welfare Society shared their strengths, weaknesses, posed challenges, and gave recommendations.

Dr. Billoo briefed the audience on technically equipped and trained appointed staff to work in emergencies. According to him the inability to mitigate the disaster on the day one occurs is failure of planning. “‘It will never happen to us’ is not an acceptable excuse for the absence of adequate planning”, he remarked.

 Dr. Billoo pointed out that during an emergency there should be a major incident plan in place for every EMS provider (ambulance service), each hospital that accepts emergencies, high risk venues, such as sports stadiums and concert halls and a regional, provincial and national plan for the coordination of resources on a wider scale.

Dr. Ghaffar Billoo, Chairman HANDS, thanked the audience and urged to gather up for the needs of Karachi and overall humanity.

Dr. Billoo has over 23 years’ experience in the Emergency Medical Services field and currently working for‘The Emergency Operations Centre (EOC)’ in London, a consecutive award winning organization by the UK government.

Saturday, 10 May 2014

Absolute power in the Middle East is beneficial to the West

by Farooq Sumar

Monarchies, particularly the absolute kind are anathema to most of us, but political realism induces their acceptance even in this day and age. The muted and symbolic ones, mostly in the European Union, are a matter for the countries where they exist to see the cost-benefit ratio of their emotional needs. Our concern is with the absolute Monarchies, most of them exist in the Muslim Middle East, that adversely impact the fundamental rights of their people, the migrants that work for them and their actions in global politics that affect the region as well as the rest of us.

The Middle East’s present political and geographical map was carved by the British and French after defeating the Ottoman Empire in World War 1, according to the Sykes—Picot Agreement of 1916. Its aims were to dismantle the Ottoman Empire, divide Turkey, strip it and abolish the Caliphate and eradicate as much of its Islamic zeal as possible; In order to weaken Islam artificial countries were formed in the Middle East bereft of logical borders but with future possibilities of discord and each one was given a “King” or a “Ruler” dependent and firmly allied to its master’s interests, or a direct Mandate as in Syria and Palestine. Since the Crusades this was the only opportunity to tame the Muslim world and it could not be wasted. The British and French performed a thorough job that pays dividends even today for the Western alliance.