Pakistan province suspends 140 doctors for absence, negligence

Islamabad: A provincial government in Pakistan on Thursday suspended 140 doctors for being absent and showing negligence in performing their duties, officials said.

Show-cause notices were also issued to 180 doctors in various hospitals of Balochistan province, provincial health secretary Asmatullah Kakar told Dawn.

The doctors had remained absent for a long time and failed to turn up for their duties despite repeated notices, he said. Most of the suspended doctors were posted in remote districts of the province.

Kakar said seven cases for termination of senior doctors and 45 cases for determining penalties have been forwarded to the chief secretary for further action.

Despite the government allocating more than Rs 25 billion for healthcare in the ongoing financial year, the health sector in the southern province paints a bleak picture.

The provincial health department recently came under scrutiny after the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) launched an investigation into the wrongful purchase of medicines worth millions of rupees.

The NAB has arrested several senior officers of the health department to probe charges of embezzlement in connection with the case.