‘PBM allocating more funds for treatment of patients’

Barrister Abid Sheikh says PBM has decided to establish its counters at public hospitals to facilitate patients
‘PBM allocating more funds for treatment of patients’

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Baitul Mal (PBM) has enhanced medical assistance allocations and simplified the application-approval procedure for ensuring prompt treatment of patients suffering from fatal diseases, PBM Managing Director Barrister Abid Waheed Sheikh said on Saturday.
Talking to the media, he said the funds allocated for individuals’ financial assistance had been slashed and diverted to medical treatment to ensure maximum help to the patients diagnosed with life-threatening diseases.
Currently, the treatment of 60 to 70 patients was being approved daily against 10 cases in the past, he said, adding that the PBM had decided to establish its counters at public hospitals to facilitate patients and ensure quick completion of formalities. 
The PBM would issue cheques within 24 hours after completing the inquiry, he added.
To a question, he said that one-window operation would start functioning at the PBM from next month for ensuring smooth services to the deserving people.
Abid Sheikh said his vision was to strengthen the department by making it more transparent, efficient and accessible to the needy people.
Vowing to improve the system of giving aid, he said a complaint/suggestion box had been placed at the PBM for getting feedback of the visitors for improvements in the services and accessibility.
He observed that the PBM had been providing financial assistance to a number of deserving people, but a majority of them belonged to the urban areas. He said that an awareness campaign would be launched soon to sensitise the people of remote areas so that they could also apply for the grants.
The PBM would also make its network digitised and transparent to facilitate the deserving people by providing them financial assistance on time, and to avoid duplications, he said. “This will also help people keep track of their applications.”
To another query, he said that the PBM would establish old-age homes for the destitute senior citizens. The first home would start functioning in Islamabad from January, he said.
About the expansion of Pakistan Sweet Homes project, Abid Sheikh said that the PBM would take steps to remove flaws in the project working across the country to make it more viable for facilitating orphans.
“A plan has also been devised to extend vocational training among the special persons to make them self-reliant,” he said.
To another question, he said that the monitoring of PBM offices located in remote areas would be conducted by an online system to make them efficient. 
“The capacity-building of the officials of the PBM will be ensured so that they can serve the deserving people in an effective manner.”
He said that a plan had also been devised to automate the PBM functioning in phases due to huge cost of the project. He said he was always available for the deserving applicants who could personally meet him, if required. 

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