Islamabad-The shortage of government hospitals in the federal capital has severely increased the load of patients in the emergency departments of two major hospitals, where more than 6000 patients were received during the three Eid holidays.  The doctors informed The Nation that Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) and Federal Government Services Hospital (FGSH) Polyclinic collectively received more than 6000 patients only in three days, mostly related to gastroenteritis, food poisoning and overeating issues.  

Interestingly, the federal capital which was said to be a ‘silent city’ on Eid holidays has been receiving thousands of patients in the emergency departments during day and night shifts.  The population of the city has reached two million, but still only two tertiary care hospitals are available in the city. Despite making tall claims, the previous government failed in establishing any new hospital for the residents of the city during the last five years.

The up-gradation of the Polyclinic hospital was also shelved in the last budget allocation by the previous government.   Doctors at PIMS said that the hospital emergency received a huge influx of patients during Eid holidays, more than the normal routine.  PIMS spokesperson and gastroenterologist Dr Waseem Khawaja said that 3000 patients came to PIMS emergency during Eid holidays and the hospital administration provided them the required medical aid.

He said that the overall influx of patients on the hospital was low because OPD was closed on Eid but, the emergency remained filled with patients during day and night shifts. He said that in emergency 6000 drips, injections and antibiotics were administered on the patients suffering with gastric and stomach problems because of overeating.  He also informed that 150 cases of road accidents were also reported in the emergency which were mostly youth and were found involved in one wheeling on motorbikes. Dr Waseem said that the hospital administered above 1200 tetanus injections to the patients because of road accidents or because of wounds caused by sharp edged tools used for animal sacrifices.

He said that the hospital recorded 1000 patients with minor injuries who were wounded during different Eid activities.  Dr Waseem mentioned that the number of patients is still increasing and will continue till the end of this week.  He also said that the patients were from all age-groups, majority were youth and from a low income background.  Meanwhile, Polyclinic also received 3425 cases in the emergency which included gastric problems, road accidents, sugar and high blood pressure patients. Dr Shareef Astori said that around 190 were traffic accident cases including some medico-legal cases, however, a large number of patients received at the emergency department were those who were facing abdominal problems because of overeating and food poisoning.  He also said that the toll of patients is likely to increase till Sunday. Dr Shareef said that no serious road accident case was admitted and all the patients were discharged after giving first aid.  He said that the emergency department was packed with patients during Eid holidays and the doctors faced extra burden because of them. He said that though the hospital met the number of patients in the emergency department but there is a dire need of more hospitals in the city as the population has increased and a large number of people now celebrate Eid in the city.

Gastroenterologist Dr Waseem Khawaja advised the residents to avoiding overeating meat as a precautionary measure for better health.  He said that a person who normally eats half plate of meat is now eating two to three plates during Eid. Dr Waseem added that people must check that the meat which they are eating is not undercooked. Dr Shareef said that a large number of population gets a chance to eat meat only on Eid-ul-Azha and they carelessly eat large proportions which can lead to medical problems.  He advised the people to avoid overeating and to maintain a balanced diet.