SWAT    -   The participants of a National Psy­chiatry Conference held here on Monday at the Saidu Medical College Swat emphasised upon young doc­tors to come forward in the field of psychiatry as Pakistan needed 9,000 psychiatrists with the increasing de­mand of psychiatric patients in the country.

The speakers including renowned psychiatrists from all over the coun­try said that currently there were only 500 available psychiatrists who were overburdened.

The Secretary Health Khyber Pak­htunkwha Mohammed Yahya Ak­hunzada was the chief guest on the occasion, while the other speakers included Prof Iqbal Afridi, Head of Department (HoD) Jinnah Postgrad­uate Medical College (JPMC) Karachi and President Pakistan psychiatric society, Madam Rozina HoD Psychol­ogy Department JPMC and Dr Ashfaq Khan Psychiatrist Saidu Medical Col­lege.

The speakers read out their re­search papers on this occasion and highlighted the causes of psychiat­ric diseases in the terror-hit zone of Malakand division especially in Swat as well as put forth valuable suggestions and recommendations to overcome it effectively. They also highlighted how one can keep him­self healthy by following teachings of Islam. The secretary health con­gratulated Pakistan Psychiatry So­ciety and Saidu Medical College for jointly holding such an important conference. He announced to vigor­ously work on improving the Mental Health Act and fountain house in KP as pinpointed in the conference.

Prof Dr Israrul ul Haq Principal SMC and CEO Saidu Group of Teach­ing Hospital(SGTH), thanked Secre­tary Health, the distinguished speak­ers, and participants from all over the country.

He said that this conference would prove a milestone and would greatly contribute in creating awareness on mental health among the doctors’ community, medical students, and general masses of Malakand division.

Tourism Act to be presented in KP Assembly

Tourism Act 2019 is all set to be presented in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa assembly to further promote tourism activities in the province.

Official sources said on Monday that under Tourism Act, a policy-making board will be constituted under the headship of the Chief Min­ister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mehm­ood Khan. The board will work for making tangible and comprehensive plans and policies for the promotion of tourism in the province.

The sources informed that under the Tourism Act, employees of the Tourism Directorate will be put in surplus pool. The act will also confer legal status to the Tourism Police.

‘KP government providing free treatment to HIV patients’

The Provincial Minister for Health Dr Hisham Inamullah Khan said on Monday that the human immunode­ficiency virus (HIV) was a curable disease and the government was providing free treatment to such pa­tients.

He said that regular HIV tests were conducted on patients, who were admitted to the province’s hospi­tals in order to timely treat them if they were diagnosed positively, said a statement issued here. Moreover, he added that screening of blood was conducted when volunteers donated blood.

The minister said ratio of the HIV patients in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa come to 45 per cent of the total strength of HIV positive persons in the country. He had also directed all hospitals of the province to launch awareness drive on HIV and install banners inscribed with precaution­ary measures against the disease.

He said modern regional blood centres were being established for blood screening and preventing the disease timely.

The minister appealed to people for adopting precautionary steps to prevent HIV disease, adding that the total number of HIV patients in KP stood at 415 including 330 men, 84 women and one transgender person.