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SHCC anti-quackery unit achieves remarkable results in FY 2023-24

KARACHI: Under the guidelines of Chairman Sindh Healthcare Commission (SHCC) Dr. Khalid Hussain Shaikh, Board of Commissioners and CEO SHCC, Directorate of Anti-Quackery achieved remarkable results during the fiscal year 2023-24.  

During the financial year (FY July 23- June 24), SHCC continued its core mission to ‘Ban Quackery’ in abidance with SHCC Regulatory laws.      

During this period, Anti Quackery teams carried out 5625 inspections identifying new ‘quack zones ‘in various districts and talukas.  A total of 2334 quack outlets were sealed as per law. Moreover, 1541 warning notices were issued to non-compliant healthcare practitioners to improve healthcare practices.

In addition, 682 follow-up inspection visits were conducted to previously sealed outlets to ensure due diligence. Overall, 1068 outlets were found to be functioning in compliance with the law. 

Furthermore, penalties recovered this financial year amounted to PKR 13.3 million with an average recovery rate of 55%.

‘We are currently building a larger workforce to fight the rising number of Quacks”, stated Director Anti Quackery S. Zeeshan A Shah.

SHCC took the lead this year and launched the SHCC HIV Outbreak Control Action Plan to deal with the menace of HIV & Quackery, in collaboration with partners and stakeholders including WHO, CDC, SBTA, PPHI District Government, and IG Office This operation, currently in its 44th week delivered positive results where more than 1000 quackery outlets were shut down and sealed, as per law.

The next phase of the operation has already begun in District Mirpur Khas under the supervision of the health ministry, to eradicate the upsurge of HIV cases by cutting down on ‘rampant quackery’.  

One of the key successful milestones achieved by the Directorate is ‘effective stakeholder engagement’ with the Commissioners Office, engaging District Deputy Commissioners and their teams to align with SHCC Inspection & Enforcement teams forming a ‘joint task force’ to crack down on illegal clinics.

On the law enforcement front, strong LEA support was provided through the IGP Office and DIGs ranges, helping timely deployment of police force for effective on-field operations. Law enforcement agencies can further play a critical role by simplifying the FIR process at police stations for faster dispensation of justice.

As provincial lead for Anti Quackery Operations, the Director Anti Quackery    continued to collaborate with DG Health Office to get additional support from DHOs on the provision of authenticated quack data for faster legal actions to be taken against ‘Quacks’ , on District and Taluka levels.

Positive media reporting has been instrumental in highlighting the efforts being done by SHCC to reduce and eradicate ‘quackery’.

With manpower strength increasing this year, SHCC Anti Quackery Operations will increase pace and further multiply scope of operations, committing to venture out to far flung areas alongside big cities to hunt for ‘Quacks ‘through on-going Anti-Quackery drive across the province.

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I am an experienced writer, analyst, and author. My exposure in English journalism spans more than 28 years. In the past, I have been working with daily The Muslim (Lahore Bureau), daily Business Recorder (Lahore/Islamabad Bureaus), Daily Times, Islamabad, daily The Nation (Lahore and Karachi). With daily The Nation, I have served as Resident Editor, Karachi. Since 2009, I have been working as a Freelance Writer/Editor for American organizations.

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