100+ Pakistani Women Doctors Provide Telemedicine to Palestinians

KARACHI: Pakistani women doctors from more than a dozen countries have joined forces through a technology-driven initiative to provide medical support and care to thousands of traumatised people in Gaza and other bombarded cities, officials and people.

They claimed that the female doctors were reintroduced to the provincial health system as a result of a technology-driven initiative by Dow University of Health Sciences (DUHS), one of the country’s oldest public sector medical universities, which has so far succeeded in reintroducing hundreds of Pakistani lady doctors to the profession in the last two years.

“A project called ‘eDoctor’ was launched about two years ago for around 35,000 female doctors who had completed their medical education at the expense of the state or privately but were no longer associated with the profession so that they could once again become part of the country’s medical workforce,” an official said.

“Hundreds of doctors have returned to the health system as a result of the programme. The idea was to use cutting-edge technological technologies to bring these out-of-work female doctors together on a single platform and provide them with virtual-based instruction in fresh and updated medical education in the form of a comprehensive curriculum that covered all areas of becoming a general physician. Hundreds of doctors working from home in Pakistan and other parts of the world are currently contributing to the health system through the eDcotor project, according to the official.

He said the project’s success inspired the Sindh government, which saw it as the best option for monitoring thousands of Covid-19 patients who had no contact with a physician and needed regular consultation despite mild or no symptoms for better recovery, precautions, and a diet plan during their home confinement.

Telemedicine 

Moving on under the new plan, he stated that the project had recently expanded its telehealth services in Palestine, primarily for women and children living in war-torn areas.

“We provide services in Gaza, Ramallah, and the West Bank,” said Abdullah Butt, founder of Educast, the eDoctor project’s technological partner.

“We have more than 150 doctors working for this cause in Pakistan and around the world, including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand. We took the initiative simply for humanitarian reasons, to do our part in a difficult time for Palestinians,” he explained.

Barriers and Roadblocks 

He alluded to a problem that arose soon after the system was implemented, in which doctors associated with the platform in Pakistan and patients and humanitarian workers in Palestine were unable to communicate due to a language barrier.
He noted that most of the doctors who offered their services couldn’t speak Arabic, and that the bulk of relief workers and patients in Palestine couldn’t understand any other language.

“In order to overcome this barrier, we looked into our contacts in other countries,” Mr Butt explained. “Finally, we were able to put in place a broad-based approach that remedied the problem. We’ve brought onboard Arabic-speaking female doctors from Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Sudan, and linked them to our system. They are now in Palestine with our Pakistani doctors, providing services to the Palestinian people.”

He claimed that the primary and most widespread issue there right now was the post-war stress and most of the people, primarily women and children, were in need of psychotherapy.

Dr. Sadia Khalid, a project member, said eDoctor has helped her acquire a wide skill set and that she felt privileged to be a part of the Palestine project.

“Under such trying conditions, our project will serve as a beacon of hope for all of Palestine’s valiant people. “I am grateful for the opportunity to offer my expertise and assist those who are in desperate need,” she said.

Source: Dawn News