LAHORE - Adviser to Chief Minister Punjab on Health Kh Salman Rafiq has said that steps will be taken for institutionalising school health and nutrition programme in the province.

He said this while addressing a national seminar regarding school health situation and institutionalising it held under the aegis of Fatima Memorial Hospital and Nur Centre for Research and Policy at a local hotel, on Thursday.

Besides representatives of international partners of Health Department, Parliamentary Secretary Health Kh Imran Nazir, Member Punjab Assembly Rana Munawar, President Nur Foundation Shahima Rehman, Chief Executive Officer Dr. Haroon Ehsan, Advocacy Expert NCRP Saba Sheikh, Dr. Romi Aziz, Technical Advisor Strategy and Policy Nur Foundation Maha Rehman, Additional Director School Programme Health Department Usman Ghani, officers of Education, Social Welfare, Principals of educational institutions, doctors and representatives of NGOs attended the seminar.

The adviser said that child health and public health issues were big challenges and the government was taking effective steps for improving primary and secondary healthcare which would yield far-reaching results.

He said that awareness and training of health of mothers was essential for resolving child health problems.

Kh Salman said that without controlling diseases, hospitals and budget for the treatment of patients could never be sufficient and keeping in view this requirement, government was paying special attention to the prevention.

“Education and health are interlinked and without promoting education and creating awareness among the people, implementation on health message is difficult in backward cities,” Kh Salman added.

He also made an appeal to the public to help government in the cause of bringing in health reforms, expecially cooperating with the authorities in campaigns like anti-polio drives to achieve goals.  

Earlier, school health and nutrition experts addressing the conference stressed upon the participants to present their proposals for solving the child health problems and improving school health in the light of their experiences and study.

The participants were of the view that due to lack of education and awareness, women in rural areas are unable to resolve problems of child health and even they are unaware of washing hands with soap after using toilet and cleaning feeder due to which resistance power among child reduces and diseases spread speedily.

Various core groups comprising participants of the conference were constituted which will finalise recommendations and send to health department and provincial government.