Minister opens course for medico-legal experts
LAHORE: Punjab Health Minister Dr Tahir Ali Javed inaugurated a refresher course for medico-legal experts at the Institute of Public Health here on Thursday.
In a speech, Dr Javed said medical jurisprudence was vital for speedy justice and urged medico-legal experts to work hard and honestly. He said the course would update the knowledge and improve the skill of the participants, adding that the government should give doctors a chance to go on training courses abroad as well.
The minister said the major function of the Health Department had been shifted to the district level. “For example, all 74 police stations in Lahore have been attached to five teaching hospitals, three district headquarter hospitals, and six rural health centres so they have access to medico-legal experts for criminal cases.”
He said the Health Department had ordered district coordination officers (DCOs), executive district officers (EDOs) and district police officers (DPOs) to assign police stations to health institutions in their areas.
Dr Javed said medico-legal experts had been ordered to file reports in a fixed time period to make the system more efficient. “In case of injuries kept under observation, the examining doctor shall mention, in writing, the due date for declaration of final opinion, which would be a maximum three weeks” after the event, he said.
He said chemical examiners, bacteriologists and serologists have been given deadlines for submitting findings as well. Chemical examiners must issue alcohol and semen reports within seven days and report on poisoning cases within three weeks. Serologists have seven days, and bacteriologists three weeks for reports on soft tissue and six weeks for bony tissue.
Surgeon Dr Aslam Chaudhry told the course participants the fee for medico-legal reports on private cases has been set at Rs 200 for initial examinations and Rs 600 for re-examinations. The government would get 45 percent, the doctor 35 percent and auxiliary staff 20 percent. Post-mortems would be free.