ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi on Tuesday said Pakistan was in high need of retaining its skilled professionals including doctors and nurses, and stressed that the present situation necessitated an effective strategy to prevent brain drain.
“Offering competitive job opportunities and creating a favourable work environment is essential to reduce the loss of our precious intellectual elite,” he said in his address here at the convocation of the dentistry and nursing departments of the Foundation University School of Health Science (FUSH).
President Alvi said the country invested its resources in doctors, engineers, and other professionals, however, the flight of skilled human capital had a negative impact on the economy and developmental growth.
He said the effective way to reduce the need for skilled doctors to seek employment abroad was to create better employment opportunities for them within the country. Pakistan, he said, needed 900,000 nurses compared to the available 300,000 at present to cope with the requirements in the field of health services.
Dr Alvi said only nine percent of students of F.Sc (Faculty of Sciences) Pre-Medical got admission to medical colleges in Pakistan, while the statistics were 25 percent in India and Bangladesh. The situation needed a strategy to set up more medicine schools to accommodate greater number of students, he added. The president pointed out that the women doctors who quit their professional fields while in a struggle to balance their family lives was a huge loss to the country.
He urged them not to walk away from their professions and contribute towards the betterment of society. Also, he said, creating a harassment-free environment for women doctors at workplaces and welcoming them to productive circles after their maternity leave was important.
The president advised the medical graduates to adopt the values of empathy and kindness while treating their patients. He highlighted the importance of preventative rather than curative medicine by educating the masses about communicable diseases and oral hygiene.
Director of Foundation University School of Health Sciences, Major General (retd) Imran Fazal said the institution was providing best quality dental education to undergraduate and postgraduate students covering all aspects of patient care and management. The nursing department, he said, was delivering excellent education and producing high-quality graduates.
The president gave away medals and merit certificates to the graduates. The best graduates of the previou year as declared by the university included Dr. Eman Ahsan, Dr. Beenish Hassan, Dr. Iqra Batool, and Dr. Sehreen Javed. A total of 54 graduates of Bachelor of Dental Sciences (BDS), 23 of Bachelor of Science in Nursing and 34 graduates of pre-Bachelor degree in nursing were given degrees.
Commandant Armed Forces Institute of Dentistry Major General Nadeem Ahmed Rana, Rector Foundation University Nasir Dilawar Shah, Registrar Amir Gulzar, faculty members, and parents of the graduates attended the ceremony. The FUSH consists of Foundation University Medical College (FUMC), Foundation University College of Dentistry (FUCD), Foundation University College of Physical Therapy (FUCP), Foundation University College of Nursing (FUCN) the University Secretariat and Fauji Foundation Hospital (FFH) (Teaching Hospital of FUMC).