Varsity to have Sh2.7bn heart centre
By NATION Correspondent
Posted Thursday, June 3 2010 at 21:01
More than US$ 35 million (Sh2.7 billion) has been earmarked for a heart and cancer referral centre at Aga Khan University Hospital in Nairobi.
Mr Moyez Alibhai, the chairman of the Aga Khan Health services in Kenya said that once the centre was complete, Kenyans would have no need to go overseas for cancer treatment.
Aga Khan Health services in Kenya was carrying out massive investment in its health facilities across the country to make sure that it was a network, by investing in systems, medical personnel and technology so that they can provide the best quality services, Mr Alibhai added.
Mr Alibhai also hinted that Aga Khan Health services was exploring ways of ensuring that the cost of medical services goes down, to cater for all Kenyans.
“We want to ensure that we have the best quality services and that is why we are investing in Information Technology, human resource, diagnostic and all our hospitals will be of benefit,” said the chairman.
Mr Alibhai made the remarks at Imperial hotel during the launch of revamped diagnostic services at Aga Khan Hospital in Kisumu.
The revamped diagnostic services aim at meeting and exceeding the expectation of its customers, with the focus of improving the quality of healthcare services.
Aga Khan hospital Kisumu chief operating officer Nadim Mawji said that the laboratory department was seeking to obtain the ISO 15189 accreditation, the benchmark for laboratory accreditation.
Firoz Rasul, President of the Aga Khan University addressed an audience at the Ismaili Centre, London on 8 July 2010, in which he looked ahead towards the University’s next 25 years.
In the next 25 years, said President Rasul, AKU will take an important evolutionary step to become a comprehensive university. With a vision for the University “to be on the frontiers of scientific and humanistic knowledge,” the President discussed AKU’s plans to offer programmes in the liberal arts, media and communications, law and public policy, and government. He also talked about the University’s plans to build several new campuses and to embark on regional integrated health care strategies in South and Central Asia and East Africa.
Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi, wins Environment Excellence Award 2010
06 Aug 2010
by Ahmad Ladhani in AKU Pakistan
The National Forum for Environment and Health (NFEH), in collaboration with United Nations Environment Programme and the Ministry of Environment, Government of Pakistan, has presented its Annual Environment Excellence Award 2010 to Aga Khan University Hospital.
This year, AKUH is one of 58 institutions to have won the award in a nationwide competition. The award recognises industry leaders following sustainable and environment-friendly practices. Using relevant data and records from the last year, NFEH reached its decision based on the following criteria: the environment, health and safety (EHS) management programme of the organisation; leadership commitment; staff participation, goals and objectives, training programmes and progress; incident reporting and analysis; waste management; and performance monitoring, measurement and improvement.
Aga Khan Planning and Building Services holds art competition
Art competition in Pakistan raises awareness of environmental issues
Energy Globe Award for Aga Khan Planning and Building Services
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AKU’s East Africa project to receive “utmost priority”: EAC Secretary General
August 12, 2010
Address by Ambassador Juma V. Mwapachu, Secretary General, East African Community during the commissioning of the new printing press and celebrations of 10 years of the founding of Mwananchi Communications Limited
Distinguished Chair of the National Media Group, Mr Wilfred Kiboro;
Acting Chair of Mwananchi Communications Ltd, Madam Zuhura Muro;
Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nation Media Group, Mr Linus Gitali;
Members of the Board of Mwananchi Communications Ltd;
Managing Director of Mwananchi Communications Ltd, Mr Sam Shollai;
Your Excellencies, Ambassadors, High Commissioners and Heads of Diplomatic Missions;
Management and Staff of Mwananchi Communications Ltd;
Ladies and Gentlemen.
Thank you for honouring me and the East African Community (EAC) at this event of historic importance which marks the 10th Anniversary of the founding of the Mwananchi Communications Company and the Commissioning of the state-of-the-art printing press. At the outset, allow me to congratulate the Board of Directors, management and staff of the Mwananchi Communications for the lofty achievements your company has realised in the past 10 years. Many Tanzanians and East Africans would agree that your achievements do indeed reflect the theme of today’s event, namely professionalism and integrity.
The emergence of Mwananchi Communications in 2000 was no mere happenstance. Its establishment coincided with the birth of the EAC and was generally in response to the fast changing political and economic climate in the East African region. That was the time when political and economic liberalisation had begun to take root, unleashing a marketplace for ideas to contend and for business enterprise to flourish. Indeed, the prospect for a renewed spirit of regionalism provided the added impetus for “energising the power of human diversity”, to cite the inspiring words of His Highness, the Aga Khan.
Today, 10 years after your establishment, Tanzanians and East Africans generally have every reason to celebrate a new political and economic space that is singularly manifested by the growth and vibrancy of the media in the EAC region. The American social critic, Alvin Toffler was right when he wrote that information is the most democratic source of power. The people of East Africa today are indeed empowered thanks partly to the media, to demand, exercise and defend their rights. Equally, they are empowered through sheer knowledge, which the media contributes, about the challenges that confront the human condition.
As you celebrate your 10th Anniversary, it is important to dedicate your achievements to the bold and inspiring vision of His Highness, the Aga Khan who, fifty years ago, established the Nation Media Group, your associate company.
His Highness stands out in the world as a leading pillar of democratic and human values. His intense and steadfast commitment to knowledge advancement has underlined the strategic investment of Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) in the media industry and in broad-based education amongst other ventures for social development. It also underscores his fundamental thesis about the nature of current global and regional tensions, including terrorism, which the late Professor Samuel Huntington associated with a clash of civilisations. In contrast, the view of His Highness, the Aga Khan is that such tensions manifest “a clash of ignorance”.
This is the thesis that drives His Highness, the Aga Khan’s commitment to using the instruments of formal education and the media to eradicate ignorance. On the education front specifically, AKDN is establishing 18 academies in South Asia, Central Asia, Middle East and Africa at a cost of nearly US$ 1 billion. Here in East Africa, the Network is in the process of establishing an East African Regional University, whose main campus will be in Arusha, under the umbrella of Aga Khan University (AKU), whose headquarters is in Pakistan.
This University will be multi-country and multi-campus and will advance the priorities of the EAC in line with global standards. In addition, AKDN will establish an East African Institute also under the aegis of AKU to act as a research and dialogue think-tank for addressing East Africa’s challenges, notably in climate, environment, energy, jobs and regional cohesion. The EAC is already working very closely with AKU on accreditation and other issues. I am pleased to state that under my leadership at the EAC, the East African regional University project will receive utmost priority.
It is important to see what is evolving in the EAC region through the plans of the AKDN in the proper context. Responding to an interview question in Canada, by The Globe and Mail newspaper, on May 28 this year about how the world has changed since his last visit to Canada in 2002, His Highness, the Aga Khan put the EAC at the heart of his answer. He said, and I quote, “Well, I think one of the key issues is this question of the future, regionalism. I think we are seeing regionalism becoming a more and more international factor in the way countries relate to each other. I would give you the East African Community as an example of countries that in the past were part of a colonial system. Not all five of them, one wasn’t part of it. But today, you have five African countries entering into a constructive group for social and economic interest”.
It is this ethos of regionalism that His Highness refers to that encapsulates the spirit of the event here today. The founding of Mwananchi Communications Limited falls squarely within this perspective and for which I salute and commend the leadership of Nation Media Group. Along with Monitor Publications in Uganda, Nation Media Group has become a truly regional media enterprise making its vision of becoming “the media of Africa for Africa” highly plausible.
For us in the EAC, we see the consolidation of the East African media conglomerate, be in print, electronic or both, as the strategic partner in driving our integration agenda forward. Already, through the East African newspaper, the EAC has become a household name in East Africa and beyond. But even national newspapers like The Citizen and Mwananchi, your own daily editions, as well as other leading national newspapers and television stations, are increasingly featuring stories and issues about EAC integration. I wish to take the opportunity to hail this partnership and urge that we intensify it for the benefit of the East African people.
As you know, the EAC is at an advanced stage in forging deeper and wider integration. But it is a stage that is churning out more complex aspects of integration which, if not well managed and explained, could cause setbacks. I have lately been reading a May 2010 report by Professor Mario Monti submitted to the President of the European Commission, Mr Jose Manuel Barosso. The report is titled: A New Strategy for the Single Market: At the Service of Europe’s Economy and Society. The report is in response to serious challenges confronting the EU’s 18 year old single market.
Mr Barosso’s letter to Professor Monti, President of the distinguished Italy’s Bocconi University in Milan, refers to “a need for a new awareness, in the public opinion as well as in political circles, of the dramatic consequences that would derive from undermining the single market. That would erode the basis for economic integration and growth and employment throughout the EU … the full potential of the single market has not yet been delivered. In many areas the single market is far from being completely in place …”
The EAC has stepped into a common, or single, market only on July 1st this year. Yet, you read in the media all kinds of perceptions about the EAC common market as if it were 10 years old. The journey to putting a common market in place has just started and the challenges will be many.
Do you know that after 18 years of the single market in Europe only 2.3 per cent of Europeans live in a Member State different from that of their nationality? Do you know that freedom of movement of workers in the EU is the most contested and least used of the four freedoms in the EU single market? Do you also know that updating the regulations on coordination of social security systems in the EU required 11 years of negotiation?
Now do not take me for a pessimist. I am totally sold to what the EAC common market can do to unlock the potential of our economies. The economic benefits will be huge, especially flowing from trade-in services and shared human resource capacity. Equally, the free movement of capital would trigger incentives for private equity funds to step into our region and bringing down the cost of risk capital. My point is one of caution against constructing castles in the air like the Abu Nawas Fable.
The media must help in promoting better understanding of the complexity of the common market and desist from being purveyors of shortcomings and pointing accusing fingers at some of the EAC Partner States for lack of commitment. Realising the full potential of the common market will take years, not months. But it will be best realised when the media supports the efforts being undertaken, always respectful of national conditions.
The challenges facing the EU single market attests to the need to galvanise political will as well as the commitment of East African citizens around shared integration goals. The media has a unique place and role to play in this worthy task.
Allow me to end my statement by once again congratulating Mwananchi Communications Limited for turning 10 years old. During this period you became the first media firm to produce a full-colour newspaper in Tanzania. But the media marketplace is fast evolving in Tanzania and the EAC region generally. There are challenging economic times ahead that require the media to transform and reposition itself. What will differentiate you from the rest is fearless but fair reporting, respectful of Tanzanian values and a content in editorials and columns that responds to changing demographics and the new audiences that are more technologically savvy.
The installation of the new state-of-the-art printing press should help to leverage your competitiveness both in cost of production and the quality of your product. I wish you well as you enter the second decade of your operations.
It is now my singular pleasure and honour to declare the newly installed printing press officially commissioned.
The Sindh flood disaster is still unravelling. Given the news of fresh floods in the rivers up north, we do not anticipate the waters to recede anytime soon.
Our large city response
We deployed an urban response in Bilal Colony, where there was a cluster of IDPs, from our clinic. We are planning to set up another camp in Karachi and will need to send a team out to assess location/feasibility. The same is the case with Hyderabad and we should set up a camp near the Hyderabad hospital.
Our field camp in Naushero Feroze has been operational since last week and is successful. We are now strengthening it. We were asked by the district admin in Khairpur to help assist with a diarrhoea outbreak and we deployed staff yesterday. This is being consolidated into a proper Diarrhoea Ward of 100 beds and we can then have our MNCH camp(s) nearby the IDP clusters. Over this week we plan to deploy the following teams:
1.We hope to have a team in place in Thatta today given the heavy influx of people.
2.We also hope to have a camp set up in Sukkur on Monday in liaison with the local staff in the Lab Office. We have identified a couple of likely spots and have also linked with a local paediatric hospital which is providing free care, so that we can focus on primary prevention. In Sukkur we will focus on the full repertoire of maternal and child care.
3.We have obtained assistance from the army to deploy a team to Dera Murad Jamali where the population has shifted from Jacobabad. This team should depart by Tuesday.
4.A team will depart for Gilgit-Baltistan on Wednesday assisted in the air lift by FOCUS.
This will raise the current total to six camps/teams this week as per plan and can be easily doubled next week in the same locations.
We will be proceeding to Sukkur on Tuesday evening for direct consultations with the health cluster staff and to see what is happening for ourselves. We shall spend two days assessing the situation on the ground in Sukkur, Khairpur, Naushero Feroze, Matiari, Hyderabad (Jamshoro/Dadu border) and possibly Thatta.
Lastly, we have been trying very hard to try and get a cholera vaccination campaign organized to prevent outbreaks and this has proved very challenging. The government of Sindh is very keen on this and we are trying to identify donors in collaboration with the International Vaccine Institute. The estimated cost for 500,000 doses is about US$6 million and if we can secure this, it will be a major contribution from AKU/AKDN.
AKU in the List of governments and institutions making commitments in the UN drive to save the lives of more than 16 million women and children
Academic and research institutions
Institute for Global Health of Barcelona IS Global, International Partnership for Microbicides, University of Aberdeen, the Aga Khan University, University of Ghent, International Center for Diarrhoeal Disease Research in Bangladesh, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Osaka Medical Center and Research Institute for Maternal and Child Health, Consortium of Universities of Global Health, University of Toronto, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction
KARACHI: The World Mental Health Day observed on October 11 every year raises public awareness about mental health issues all over the world.
An announcement of the Aga Khan University here said that the Day provides a platform to initiate open discussions on mental disorders and investments in prevention and treatment services.
It pointed out that the treatment gap for mental, neurological and substance-use disorders is formidable, especially in poor-resource countries.
The announcement further said that the Aga Khan University will commemorate World Mental Health Day (WMHD) on October 11 focusing on this year's global theme: `Burden of Care in Mental Illness'.
The WMHD programme will include lectures by specialists on these topics: `Who looks after the mentally ill in Pakistan? by Dr Murad Moosa Khan; `Stigma and mental illness: Time to change’ by Dr Haider Naqvi; `The joy of caring: Social support in care giving' by Dr Nargis Asad; `From compassion to complaints: Stress of caring' by Dr Naila Bhutto; and `I don't want others to know: an alcoholic in the family' by Dr Syed Ahmer.
12 November 2010,
Over the last 200 years or so, western countries have largely dominated the flow of knowledge, with the result that ideas from other countries have been greatly under-represented in studying and analysing issues that affect the daily lives of people throughout the world. Correcting this imbalance, which arose partly under colonial rule, is an enormous task — but work is underway.
In London, the Aga Khan University’s Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations (AKU-ISMC) is striving to bring more voices to international debate. AKU has an international reputation in the fields of medicine and healthcare that it is extending into the fields of humanities and social sciences. Through the ISMC, it aims to strengthen research and teaching about the heritage of Muslim societies as they have evolved over time, with specific attention to the challenges these societies face in contemporary settings.
For Sikeena Karmali Ahmed, the ISMC’s manager of publications and editing, the work of bringing Muslim scholarship to a wider audience is a labour of love. “I feel very devoted to this work. I believe in it. It’s not just a job for me,” she said.
Ahmed’s direct experience in Central Asia, where she directed a human rights training programme, gives immediacy to the work being undertaken at the ISMC. She has worked with the Aga Khan Humanities Project in Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgistan. “I was working in Afghanistan during the American bombardment and on the outskirts of Afghanistan during the Taleban rule between 1999 and 2004,” she explained. It was while undertaking a survey on gender in Tajikistan’s Karategin Valley in 1999 that she saw the harsh actions of the ruling Taleban. A commander Shah ordered the public hanging of two girls, aged just 12 and 14, who had wanted to go to school. To meet the commander, Ahmed — herself a Muslim — donned a full veil, as it was only on his terms that any communication could take place.
She asked him, “Can you show me or explain where it is written that Muslim women should not be educated beyond primary school?” The commander, who Ahmed thought was unable to read the Koran in Arabic, could not point to a source for his edict. His brutal actions, she observed, also need to be seen in the context of
He associated education with Soviet occupation, as under the Soviets, education was compulsory and religious worship of any kind forbidden. In the commander’s mind, education had become synonymous with Soviet-isation — something to be eradicated. In this
case, as Ahmed pointed out, the issue of education “was misappropriated and misassigned”, with tragic results.
The commander asked Ahmed, “Aren’t you afraid of asking these questions?” She replied: “You pray every day — or you claim to — to a God who is merciful and forgiving. Do you really think that a merciful and forgiving God would want you to have killed two young girls because they were trying to educate themselves?” The commander, she recalled, paused for thought at that point, but “not as much as I would have liked him to.”
The ISMC offers a range of short courses on Muslim cultures in addition to its highly demanding two-year Master of Arts in Muslim Cultures degree. Students come from the US, Canada, Iran, Central Asia, India, Pakistan and East Africa. Many graduates go on to work in the developing world, perhaps within the Aga Khan Development Network or continue their studies at PhD level at reputable universities such as Oxford or Cambridge.
Over 300 doctors and nurses graduate at AKU’s 23rd Convocation
November 13, 2010
Keeping the annual tradition of the institution alive, Aga Khan University (AKU) trustees, alumni, faculty and staff honoured 323 graduates at the 23rd AKU Convocation on Saturday, November 13, 2010.
This year, the University’s Institute for Educational Development graduated 21 students and the School of Nursing 162 nurses, 12 of whom received a Master’s degree.
The Medical College graduated 97 doctors and granted 24 Master of Science degrees. There were 19 Master of Bioethics graduates also, the first class from this programme at the University.
Amidst much applause, Rinam Rahmatullah received the Best Graduate Award from the School of Nursing and Dr Saulat Sajjad Sheikh from the Medical College.
Mr Khushnood Lashari, the Federal Health Secretary and chief guest at the morning Convocation reminded graduates of the contribution the University has made to the country. Highlighting the hardships the country is facing in the aftermath of the 2010 Pakistan floods, he commended the University’s relief efforts in making the Railway Hospital in Sukkur operational and turning it “into a diarrheal treatment centre which potentially saved many from the epidemic of diarrhoea and cholera in the region.” He said there was much to be done in this time of need, and urged graduates to “build institutions, create knowledge, set benchmarks of quality by using best practices, develop models for change, inspire ethical practice and lead by example.”
The chief guest at the afternoon programme, Justice Sarmad Osmany, Chief Justice, Sindh High Court reminded the graduating doctors that they should not treat the medical profession as merely a career. Rather, they must have compassion for their fellow human beings and the desire to serve humanity. He also spoke about the current situation in Pakistan and how the nation is facing a series of major calamities including the 2005 earthquake and the recent floods, as well as terrorism. These are situations that only the citizens of Pakistan can take responsibility for and respond to.
On a similar note, Mr Firoz Rasul, President, Aga Khan University reminded graduates of their role in rebuilding Pakistan. He emphasised how great leaders have been able to effect change by challenging the way a society thinks and shapes its institutions; from Nelson Mandela, who withstood 27 years in prison on the basis of a principle, to Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, who nursed the birth of a nation.
Mr Rasul called for leadership that displays the same qualities of resilience. “Leaders who have the capacity to bounce back from misfortune, disruptive change, and crises; who have the ability to step up, see a new horizon with greater opportunities, and then engage those around them to achieve that vision,” he said. The ability to be a resilient leader is driven by a person’s intrinsic qualities, attitudes and behaviours and an ethical framework. “It comes from the ability to look at challenges as opportunities to grow, to change, and to learn from mistakes rather than seeing ourselves as victims of circumstances and feeling we are not in control of our own destiny. It comes from our willingness to take the initiative rather than feel sorry for ourselves and inspire those around us to believe in their own capabilities.”
The University also presented three people with awards. The Award of Excellence in Education went to Dr Shaista Masood Khan, for her outstanding contribution to education, the Award of Distinction to Dr Terrence Gibson and Dr Riaz Qureshi, who have contributed constructively and consistently to the development of the University.
Also in attendance were representatives from student groups, various student and academic leaders, and staff, all of whom played an important role for students during their years at AKU.
For details, please visit the University's Convocation websection.
About Aga Khan University
AKU was chartered in 1983 as Pakistan’s first private university. Its objective is to promote human welfare in general, and the welfare of the people of Pakistan in particular, by disseminating knowledge and providing instruction, training, research and service in the health sciences, education and such other branches of learning as the University may determine. AKU also has programmes in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, the United Kingdom, Afghanistan, Syria and Egypt.
Dr. Zulfiqar Bhutta of Aga Khan University is on the Advisory Panel of Scientists Without Borders Challenge for Solutions to Combat Consequence of Malnutrition
Posted: 16 Nov 2010 06:39 AM PST
To ensure scientific rigor and independence, Scientists Without Borders convened an Advisory Panel of three of the world’s leading nutrition science and policy experts and vested them with the independent authority to identify the appropriate parameters, specific focus area, and criteria for this challenge. These esteemed scientists—Dr. Zulfiqar Bhutta of Aga Khan University in Pakistan; Dr. Eileen Kennedy, Dean of the Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science & Policy at Tufts University; and Dr. Ricardo Uauy, a professor at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and former president of the International Union of Nutritional Sciences—will also assist Scientists Without Borders in the selection of the prize-winning solution.
KARACHI: Universal Children’s Day (UCD) is being celebrated on Nov 27 (today) like every year to promote mutual exchange and understanding among children all over the world. Aga Khan University (AKU) is commemorating UCD today to initiate action to benefit and promote children’s welfare in Pakistan and abroad. The UCD line-up will include stalls for health-related activities and lectures by specialists on topics such as ‘Nutritional Needs of Growing Children: Is my newborn healthy?’ ‘Beyond Physical Health: How can we protect our children from illness?’ and ‘Early Childhood Development’. The programme will begin at 10am and conclude at 1pm at AKU Auditorium, Stadium Road campus. ppi
KARACHI: The alumni of Aga Khan University (AKU) is organising free medical camp in different localities of the city on Thursday (today). The camps at Karimabad, Federal B Area; Bilal Colony, Korangi; Sultanabad, and New Sabzi Mandi areas are offering visitors an opportunity to check their blood pressure, weight, BMI and blood glucose levels. The camping will start at 11am and continue till 4pm where people will also be given information about basic hygiene practices and how to protect oneself from infectious diseases such as malaria, dengue and pneumonia. The visitors will also be offered a chance to speak to a mental health counselor, who will screen for depression and offer advice on how to manage stress, one of the main causes of depression. staff report
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