Expressing her serious reservation about going abroad for medical treatment, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today announced that from now on she would take treatment at Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib KPJ Specialized Hospital in Gazipur, agency reports. “There are some people who always think they need to go abroad if they fall sick a little. But I have serious reservation about that why we will have to go abroad for treatment and why international standard hospitals won’t be built in the country,” she said. Keeping this in my mind, she said, her first government during 1996-2001 tenure cut tax on the equipment of the hospitals and made tax free the equipment for the treatment of the children so that more hospitals are constructed in the private sector.
The Prime Minister said this while launching the academic activities of Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib Memorial KPJ Nursing College at Tetuibari, Kashimpur here. The institute has been setup on the compound of Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib KPJ Specialized Hospital that was established in 2013 on six acres of land at a cost of Taka 215 crore under the Public- Private Partnership (PPP). Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Trust and Kumpulan Perubetan Johor (KPJ) Healthcare Berhad, a Malaysian company, jointly implemented the project.
Expressing the hope that this hospital would be turned into a world-class hospital, Sheikh Hasina said she would receive treatment from this hospital when doctors advise her to go abroad for the purpose. “I would come here for treatment when my physicians would advise me to go abroad to this end. I want that Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib Memorial KPJ Specialized Hospital would be built as an international standard hospital,” she said. Health Minister Mohammad Nasim, Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Haque, Convenor of Project Committee Professor Dr Syed Modasser Ali, State Minister for Health Zahid Malek, Health Secretary Syed Manzurul Islam, Chairman of Joint Committee Major General (retd) Abdul Hafiz Mallik, President and Managing Director of KPJ Healthcare Berhad, Malaysia Hazi Amirudddin Abdul Sattar, and a student of the first batch of the college, Sadia Farhana, also spoke on the occasion.
Member Secretary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Trust Sheikh Hafizur Rahman presided over the function, while Member of Board of Directors of the college Nazmul Hasan Papon, MP, gave the vote of thanks. Terming nursing as the best profession, the Prime Minister called upon new generation to pursue higher specialized education on nursing and dedicate themselves to serve the distressed humanity. “I extremely hounor the nursing profession,” she said.
“Yes a patient usually receives treatment from a doctor. But the patient recovers early with the very catring touch of hands of a nurse,” she said, adding the nurse also brings comfort and peace in the patient’s mind and provides inspiration to him or her. In view of this, she said, she considers the nursing profession as the best profession. The Prime Minister said once nursing profession was seriously neglected in the country as the nurses were included in the class three. Besides there was a provision that only science students could take the profession. But after coming to power, she said, her government changed entire curriculum for the nursing education and created opportunity of higher education like graduation, masters and PhD for them. “We also encouraged setting up of nursing institutes in public and private sectors and arranged training for them at home and abroad,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina said her government has taken massive steps to create qualified and efficient nurses who would be able to work at home and abroad taking the facilities of employments.
She recalled with gratitude the great contribution of her mother Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib who standing beside the Father of the Nation served the distressed people particularly the women who were tortured and violated during the War of Liberation. “My mother also played unforgettable role in all struggles and movements of the country including the great War of liberation and inspired Bangabandhu in the independence movement keeping herself behind the scene,” she said.
In recognition to her mother’s invaluable contributions to the distressed people, she said, the hospital-cum-institute has been named after the great lady Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib.
In this connection, the Prime Minister also extended her heartfelt thanks to Malaysian Prime Minister who himself attended the inauguration ceremony of the hospital in 2013.
Highlighting the historical background of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Trust, Sheikh Hasina said the trust was formed in 1994 for the welfare of the poor people of the country. Sheikh Hasina said she along with her younger sister Sheikh Rehana donated Dhanmondi 32 Road’s house and all other inherited property to the trust.
Stipends are being given to about one thousand 700 poor and disabled students from the trust fund, she said. Besides, treatment expenses for the poor people including Awami League leaders and workers as well as for the wounded persons of the 21st August grenade attacks are also being met from the trust fund, she added. Sheikh Hasina requested the local leaders and parliament members to look after the activities of Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib Specialized Hospital and Nursing Institute. The Prime Minister in her speech also announced that the existing hospital would be turned into a 500-bed hospital. “We have also a plan to upgrade it as a medical college,” she said, adding an under pass near the hospital-cum-institute would be built for easing the movements of the pedestrians.
Spelling out her government steps for the development of the health sector, Sheikh Hasina said the aim of the government is to serve the people and reach the healthcare services to the people’s doorsteps. “Our government has been working to achieve the goal,” she said. Referring to setting up community clinics across the country, the Prime Minister said the concept for establishing community clinics was not hired from any country. “I learned many things from my father who always thought about the wellbeing of the rural and poor people and considering this we took initiatives for constructing the community clinics,” she noted.