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ADDICARE – a state-of-the-art drug treatment, rehabilitation center –

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KARACHI: Although, the Sindh government has earmarked around Rs 139 billion to improve health facilities in the province, however it seems that the Sindh government is least concerned for the rehabilitation of the drug-dependent people that mainly includes youth and students.

In Sindh, mostly schools and hospitals are being handed over to private parties on public private partnership (PPP) mode to improve delivery of health facilities to the people of the province however the authorities concerned never bothered to think of establishing drug rehabilitation centers to save precious lives of the drug addicts.  

In July 2019, the lawmakers in the Sindh Assembly from both sides of the aisle had passed a resolution with a request to establish rehabilitation centers for people addicted to drugs and to take care of educational institutions that have become nurseries of drugs use. Interestingly, the lawmakers themselves and the government functionaries never bothered to take up this alarming issue as serious.  

Not the whole province, if one considers about the worsening situation in the Karachi that according to a UNODC report in 2008 as some 14 tons of Acetic Anhydrate was seized in one interdiction made by the Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF), besides the port city has also a large number of licensed-wine shops, easy availability of hashish and almost all kinds of deadly drugs.

Within the whole scenario, the Sindh government and the city administration need to chalk out a comprehensive strategy to contain drug peddling and work for the rehabilitation of people who have become addicted to various drugs. There are only three to four drugs rehabilitation centers in the city which are working for the improvement of health of drug addicts and make them respectable citizen of the society once again.

ADDICARE Drug Treatment and Rehabilitation Center – is the only drug treatment center which is providing state-of-the-art rehabilitation services to the drug addicts, provide them with proper psychological and medical treatment in Karachi’s Gulshan-e-Iqbal near Dow University of Health Science (DUHS), Mosmiyat.

While talking to Sindhnews, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Addicare, Manzoor Hussain Kandhro told that there is no such well-equipped drug rehabilitation center that could provide rehabilitation sessions to drugs addicts. “Addicare is a 75-beded rehabilitation center and as many as 2,200 drug addicts have so far been treated/rehabilitated at the center since its establishment in year 2014”, he added.

Informing about his interests in serving the humanity, Manzoor said he used to work as ward-boy with Gulberg Pakistan Society when he was a college student in 1986, adding that he felt so relaxed to serve drug addicts. “The motivation to work for humanity and drug addicts has taken several years that led to establishment of the drug rehabilitation center in Karachi”, he said.

According to CEO, the Karachi remains one of the hot-spot for drugs due to frequent misuse of transit trade with Afghanistan. Similarly, according to UNODC, some of the highly processed drugs are transited through Karachi Port.

Quoting results of “Drug Use in Pakistan 2013 Survey”, the CEO Addicare said that the Sindh province is having second highest prevalence rate for cannabis consumption in the country and it is estimated 570,000 people used opiods (painkillers) and 34 percent used heroin, opium or both, adding that almost 100,000 drug users are estimated for injecting drugs.

The consumption of cannabis especially hashish is high with several genuine factors i.e. i) it is easily available in the city through networks attached with Afghan drug trade; ii) there is a erroneous belief among many that hashish is not forbidden in Islam and it does not fall in the category of liquor or alcohol; iii) there is no class division to consume hashish; iv) it is believed that hashish is non-addictive; v) hashish is cheaper than all drugs; and finally famous among transporters/truck drivers and the involvement of transporters in drugs trafficking.

In Pakistan, Manzoor says the total number of drug addicts as per a UN report is 7.6 million with 78% male and 22% female. The number of these addicts is increasing at the rate of 40,000 per year making Pakistan one of the most drug affected countries in the world.

Moreover, CEO Manzoor Hussain Kandhro said more than seven drug-dependent persons have been given jobs with heavy salaries at the Addicare after their rehabilitation procedure. “When a person is brought at the Addicare, he is asked to go through a test namely – Urine for Drug Abuse – so that the team of experts could start proper treatment of the drug-dependent person”.

Mr Kandhro said Addicare Drug Treatment and Rehabilitation Center provides various services which includes social welfare, crises intervention, mental health, medical, HIV/AIDS, aftercare, financial and family services.

The Addicare has a team of prominent psychiatrists, general physicians and psychologists and it follows different core components including intake processing/assessment; detoxification treatment plan; pharmacotherapy; continuing care; substance use monitoring; self-help/poor support groups; behavioral therapy and counseling; and clinical and case management.

Health

Sindh Food Authority plans massive crackdown against adulterated food items

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KARACHI: The Sindh Food Authority is all set to initiate massive crackdown against selling of tea mixed with chemical milk at chai hotels.

While taking note of the various complaints, the food authority officials launched large-scale inspection of milk and tea shops.

In the first phase, milk and tea leaf samples were collected from more than hundred shops across the city. These inspections have been conducted under the supervision of Director General Sindh Food Authority Agha Fakhar Hussain.

The samples obtained from the shops have been sent to the laboratory of Karachi University. These samples will be biologically tested to find out the facts.

Speaking on the occasion, Director General Sindh Food Authority Agha Fakhar Hussain said that Ramadan is approaching and we will ensure the sale of pure milk and tea free from adulteration in Ramadan. Sale of adulterated food items will not be allowed.

Strict action will be taken against those who sell adulterated food items as per law.

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Sindh Food Authority keeps vigil on sale/use of substandard tea: DG Agha Fakhar

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KARACHI: The Sindh Food Authority has initiated a robust campaign against the sale of substandard and adulterated tea by keeping an eye on both sellers and wholesalers.

In this regard, the officials of the authority led by Director General Agha Fakhar Hussain visited markets of tea sellers/whole-sellers. Stern action has been initiated against the whole-seller Julia Boserup.

While during the visit, shops were subjected to tests, and inspections were carried out. And, samples of all the tea varieties were also collected for further assessments from all the major wholesalers.

Speaking on the occasion, DG SFA Agha Fakhar Hussain said that the aim of such visits is to check quality of the food items so that consumers may get healthy food items.

He warned all those sellers and whole-sellers who are involved in selling sub-standard food items to avoid such practices otherwise a strict action would be taken against them according to SFA Act.

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Health

Sindh Food Authority to launch Star Rating Program for eateries

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KARACHI: The Sindh Food Authority (SFA) is all set to launch the Star Rating Program in accordance with international standards for eateries operating in the province to ensure that hygienic and healthy food is served to the people of the province.

The star-rating program would be based on the food safety and hygiene of the hotels and restaurants. With the help of the star-rating program, the citizens will be enjoying safe, hygienic and healthy dining experiences and make proper decisions about choosing the right restaurant.

In the beginning, 250 restaurants in all over the Sindh will sign up for the star-based rating system.

Chief Minister Sindh Justice (Rtd.) Maqbool Baqar envisioned the food industry in Sindh to conform safe healthy and hygienic food up to the international standards. This pilot project is part of the vision of the caretaker chief minister, says Director General Sindh Food Authority Agha Fakhar Hussain.

Agha Fakhar says that this system will help determine the standards of the restaurants, adding that it will instill competition among restaurants for better food quality and other services.

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