New dates for National Thalassaemia Conference

December 10, 2009

New dates for National Thalassaemia Conference have been announced by Thalassaemia Federation of Pakistan (TFP).

6th National Thalassaemia Conference and Workshops will now be organized from 17th to 19th of Dec, 2009 at Fatima Memorial College of Medicine and Dentistry, Shadman Colony, Lahore.

For further info about the conference, please contact TFP directly at their numbers: 042-5181549, 042-5181749.


6th National Thalassaemia Conference and Workshops

November 25, 2009

Thalassaemia Federation of Pakistan (TFP) is pleased to announce that the 6th National Thalassaemia Conference and Workshops will be organized from 12th to 13th of Dec, 2009 in Mirpur Azad Kashmir.

All TFP member societies, individuals and organizations are invited to participate in this conference.

In this regard, please revert to the following:

1) Federation will sponsor three individuals from each TFP member society and they will include 01 Patient, 01 Parent and 01 Representative of your society. It is requested to send those participants who have not previously attended the conference so that more and more people are provided the opportunity to participate in the conference. Deadline for conference registration is Dec 5, 2009.

2) Economy fare Train/Bus along with accommodation will be given by Federation.

3) TFP will provide accommodation on triple sharing basis (one room per society) for two nights.

4) TFP has decided to honor extraordinary Thalassaemic children. In this regard, please send us the name of one Thalassaemic child from your society, who have done exceptionally well in academic, sport or extracurricular activities by November 24, 2009. This record will be presented to a committee who will finalize the names of the children to be honored.

5) Federation also plans to publish a news letter which will be distributed in the conference and for that we request you to kindly email a write-up of your society’s activities since the last Thalassaemia conference in Karachi by 24th Nov, 2009.

6) Societies that have not submitted their TFP membership dues up to 2009, are requested to submit the dues before 24 Nov 2009. Please note that societies not paying their memberships dues by the given date will not be provided the above mentioned services.

7) Non members of TFP, kindly email or call TFP office for more information on how to attend the conference.

Details: tfp.org.pk


Celebrating 100 Bone Marrow Transplants

November 23, 2009
Celebrating 100 Bone Marrow Transplants - Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Celebrating 100 Bone Marrow Transplants - Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Italy allocates $10m for production of syringes

November 20, 2009

Courtesy by: thenews.com.pk

KARACHI: Italy has allocated $10 million for setting up a plant to locally produce self-destructive syringes under a joint venture between an Italian company and Pakistani counterpart from the private sector.

Ambassador Vincenzo Prati said this while speaking at a presentation made by the Pakistan Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association (PPMA) here on Thursday.

He said Italy has converted its $100 million loan for Pakistan through debt swap sometime back and $10 million have been allocated from that amount for this project. He pointed out that an Italian manufacturer of self-destructive syringes has been identified and now his government is looking for Pakistani partner for this joint venture.

Responding to the demand of the PPMA for arranging meetings of Pakistani pharmaceutical manufacturers and Italian pharmaceutical companies for joint ventures in technical fields, Prati said he was very willing to extend support in this regard.

“However, I need serious people from the PPMA, having concrete proposals for joint ventures in specific fields and they must first contact Italian companies and then let me know,” he added. He said low cost of production in Pakistan coupled with very high quality of Italian products would form the ideal joint ventures.

Prati said the Italian embassy will invite Italian Health Minister end of January or early February 2010 to visit Pakistan in reciprocation to the earlier visit of Pakistani Health Minister to Italy. He said a seminar could be held on “opportunities for joint ventures in pharmaceutical field in Pakistan” during the visit of the Italy’s minister.

He said large Italian pharma companies can come to Pakistan and three to four big projects in pharmaceutical fields can be discussed with Pakistani partners during that seminar. Prati said an Italian thalassemia physician is working in Pakistan to help local hospitals fight against this disease.

Earlier, Chairman of PPMA Zahid Saeed in his presentation urged the ambassador to help in joint ventures in various pharmaceutical fields including biotech facilities, active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and clinical research organisation (CROs).

He said all the major multinational pharmaceutical companies from all over the world are operating in Pakistan except Italian companies. He said pharmaceutical business was growing at a rate of 21 per cent and there were bright prospects for Pak-Italy joint ventures in this field.


Policy dialogue on family planning

November 14, 2009

Courtesy by: thenews.com.pk

The Secretary, Population Welfare, Muhammad Siddiq Memon, has said that in order to make the Family Planning Policy a success, concrete measures such as pre-counselling of couples before marriage, HIV and Thalassemia tests have been taken up by the department.

He stated this while inaugurating the Policy Dialogue on “Paradigm Shift of Population Welfare Programme” at a local hotel Wednesday.

He pointed out that the Family Planning Programme did not mean to control population growth only but also to ensure family welfare besides proper growth and care of child and mother.

Siddiq Memon said that keeping in view the rapid changes and developments taking place, the youth has to play an important role in making the programme a success.

For this purpose, the department with the approval of the Sindh Government is launching a programme on family welfare for students of Higher Secondary classes.

Later, the participants of the policy dialogue meeting, after deliberations, presented their proposals for inclusion in the Policy Dialogue to be held in Islamabad to formulate a new policy on family planning.


‘1.5m Thalassemics unaware of their condition’

November 8, 2009

Courtesy by: thenews.com.pk

Thalassemia is a painful disease and currently there are 1.5 million patients suffering from it who are completely unaware about it, said Mohammed Iqbal, president of the Iqbal Thalassemia Care Centre (KITCC) Trust on Saturday.

Addressing the inaugural ceremony of the KITCC Trust that saw a number of political figures coming forth with their support for the organisation, Iqbal further explained the illness to the audience. “There are two types of Thalassemia, minor and major. The minor one is a blood irregularity and doesn’t require any medicine but if two people having Thalassemia minor get married then their children may be born with Thalassemia major which is not curable and is a life long process of pain and misery for the family,” he explained.

“The disease spreads because of intermarriages and most of the victims are Baloch, Pathan, Memon and other such communities where intermarriages are common. As a result, the disease is carried from generation to generation,” he added.

S M Muneer, Patron-in-Chief of the KITCC Trust lamented how the government was always there when passing a bill but when it came to actually providing financial security to welfare organizations, it did not seem to have time. “We know that there are other more important issues for the government to deal with but health care is equally important, and needs concerted effort as it is teamwork and can’t be done in isolation,” he said.

Sindh Minister for Health Sindh, Dr Sagheer Ahmed, reiterated the same and added, “It’s high time we stop supporting a cause verbally and instead show that we actually aim to do something about it. We need the state to come forward as it’s a long-term process.” He also stressed the need to bring forth laws in which married couples would be asked to go for blood tests in order to avert the risk of Thalassemia.

In the end, Speaker Sindh Assembly and Acting Governor of Sindh, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, said that the Sindh Assembly had passed a resolution in October 2009 according to which it would be mandatory for the youth to go through tests before marriage so that the disease could be investigated upon. Senator Abdul Haseeb Khan also spoke.


Thalassaemia victim dies guiding others

October 30, 2009

Courtesy: Dawn.com

ISLAMABAD: ‘Should I rejoice that we’ll soon have a thalassaemia bill … or should I be sad that Salman isn’t among us to celebrate this news?’ wrote Ayesha Mehmood on her blog.

Ayesha is the sister of an unsung hero, late Salman Mehmood, who was running a website for the awareness of thalassemia patients.

After four days on ventilator, Salman succumbed to spinal meningitis at the Aga Khan University Hospital in Karachi on Monday.

Salman, also a thalassemia patient, was successfully running a website (www.thalassemia.com.pk) for the past few years from his home in Karachi.

The site was Salman’s contribution to spread the word about thalassemia – information otherwise not easily available.

‘We intended to create a general, massive awareness about the illness and to motivate people to support thalassemia patients’ Ayesha, also a thalassemic patient, told Dawn.

‘Salman was always on his toes to let the people know about the disease and was very social among internet users across the world and was managing the bread and butter for the family,’ 22-year-old Ayesha said.

She said: ‘The idea of developing an online medium was to facilitate people and families with thalassemia while all the information and support came from Salman.’

‘My father died few years ago while our elder brother also expired when he was 17 years old who was suffering from thalassemia, and now we are only two sisters and our mother’ she said.

The family is living in Garden West area in Karachi with no one to look after us.

‘Salman has done some awesome work and now I will continue his mission so we can save lives of many in future,’ she said.

Around 4,000 people from different countries have posted condolence messages and praised the efforts of Salman for creating an online awareness campaign with limited resources.

Ayesha asserted: ‘If we want to save our future generations, the government should make thalassemia tests mandatory for couples wishing to marry.’

Badar Khushnood, Pakistan’s Google representative, also a fan of late Salman, said: ‘He was a role model for the Pakistani youth and was a young entrepreneur. He has started earning from home through his website and without letting anybody know about his disease.’

‘I just learnt about him with his nick name – skdev – and also appreciated his work by commenting on his blog. Later, we met in a conference; Salman was a bright Pakistani as his work was truly commendable and he had helped.’


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