December 15, 2016
Dr. Sikandar Ali Mandhro and Mr. Yasuhiro Tojo shaking hands at the handing over ceremony
Islamabad, 15 December 2016: The Government of Japan has expanded facilities of the Child Health Institute in Karachi and provided 149 beds and approximately 140 items of state-of-the-art medical equipment to the institute. The hospital was officially inaugurated today. This hospital was supported by the Government of Japan through Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) with 1.423 billion Japanese Yen (equivalent to around Rs. 1.38 billion) under "the Project for Improvement of Child Health Institute in Karachi." The inauguration ceremony for opening the hospital was held today in Karachi, jointly attended by Dr. Sikandar Ali Mandhro, Minister Health, Government of Sindh, H.E. Mr. Takashi Kurai, Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan and Mr. Yasuhiro Tojo, Chief Representative of JICA Pakistan Office.
Sindh Government's Child Health Institute (SGCH) receives pediatric patients from all over the northern Karachi city, whose population is approximately 4.16 million and that of children under 12 (the beneficiary group of the project) is approximately 1.77 million. However, the previously existing setup of this institute could provide limited medical services due to lack of facilities and equipment. From today onward, the patients can receive specialized pediatric medical services and treatment with most sophisticated medical equipment.
The unique aspect of the Child Health Institute is that this Institute will be run by Poverty Eradication Initiative (PEI), Pakistani NGO through Public Private Partnership (PPP) under the supervision of Health Department of Government of Sindh. As a matter of fact, it is the first case of JICA's health sector project in which a hospital supported with JICA's Grant Aid will be run by PPP mode. This surely will be a good model for both JICA and Government of Pakistan.
At the ceremony, Ambassador of Japan Mr. Kurai said, "Investment in child health is the investment for the future of the country as a whole. The Child Health Institute will ensure that children in need of specialized medical care can receive high-quality medical treatment and health services." At the end of his remarks, the Japanese Ambassador said, "The completion of this project will further strengthen the existing good relationship between Japan and Pakistan.
In his speech, Dr. Sikandar Ali Mandhro, Minister Health, Government of Sindh expressed his gratitude to Japanese Government and JICA for supporting Government of Sindh in bringing about positive transformation at the hospital. He further added that "Children deserve to be happy, healthy and safe. Government of Sindh would continue to strive to strive to this end".
Speaking at the ceremony Mr. Yasuhiro Tojo, Chief Representative of JICA said "This Child Health Institute aims to provide advanced pediatric care and establish a strong patient referral system in Karachi and Sindh Province. Furthermore, given the first case of PPP mode in JICA Grant Aid Project, ensuring its success is key to us thereby ensuring that future JICA projects are replicated on the same model." Mr. Tojo added "I believe that this new children hospital will help in the fulfillment of medical demands of children at very young age and would further enhance the basics of healthy life and subsequent general improvement of national health status."
At the inauguration, Mr. Shahid Yusaf, Executive Director, Poverty Eradication Initiative (PEI) said "We appreciate Government of Japan and JICA for funding the construction of the new wing of SGCH which has increased its capacity from 50 beds to over 200 beds. We also appreciate the rigorous process GoS followed to select PEI to manage the SGCH, Karachi."