Healthcare practitioners across the country prescribe injections for different ailments, including for pain relief, most of which are unnecessary. Lack of education and awareness allows for this practice to continue.
Pakistan has been facing a serious issue, as Hepatitis B and C have become highly prevalent because of incorrect use of injections. Reusing disposable syringes is known to be the primary cause of transmission of Hepatitis B and C infections.
To shed light on this grave matter, a press conference was held at Karachi Press Club, led by a team of doctors and surgeons from the Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH), along with Society of Surgeons Pakistan.
This conference was organized to create public awareness regarding the unsafe use of injections; preventive measures in order to avoid long term chronic diseases were thoroughly discussed.
Consultant Surgeon, Dr Hasnain Zafar said, “One of the most common practices that leads to injection related infections is when people get injected over their clothes or when parts of the body where they have to be injected are not properly sanitized.”
He emphasized over three points; first, general public should always get injected from a qualified healthcare practitioner, secondly, skin must be cleaned with an alcohol swab and lastly, the use of a new syringe and needle must be ensured.
Consultant Gastroenterologist, Dr Om Parkash mentioned that on average a person got 4 to 8 injections annually, most of which are unnecessary. He also highlighted that “Hepatitis C is a silent killer and is seen to be the second highest in Pakistan.”
Dr Rehman Alvi, Consultant Surgeon discussed the fact, as to how many Pakistani healthcare professionals fail to follow WHO guidelines regarding the safe use of injections. He further added that getting unnecessary injections can kill a person within 24 hours.
President Society of Surgeons, Dr Abdullah Muttaqi, urged the media to play its role in creating awareness regarding this cause.