Health Services Academy is an autonomous institution which also enjoys financial independence - Shahzad Ali Khan


CSR initiative by industry must provide some relief to public and community at large
Health Services Academy is an autonomous
institution which also enjoys financial
independence - Shahzad Ali Khan
Five new Depts. being set up while animal Research Lab will
also be established so that Phase-I trials could be initiated
Signing of MOU with ILE will further strengthen our
training programmes

ISLAMABAD: Health Services Academy is a unique public sector institution which enjoys autonomous status as well as financial independence. We are now planning to establish five new departments while an animal research laboratory will also be set up so that Phase-I trials could also be started in Pakistan in the days to come. This was stated by Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan Dean Public Health who is also acting Vice Chancellor of HAS. He was speaking at the Memorandum of Understanding signing ceremony with Institute of Leadership Excellence (ILE) an entity established by PharmEvo Pharmaceuticals as one of its CSR initiative at HAS campus on October 21st 2021. In charge of Office of Research Innovations and Commercialization (ORIC) Prof. Mubashar and a few faculty members were also present on this occasion.

Shahzad Ali Khan

HAS Dr. Shahzad said has a long history of promoting public health in Pakistan and it offers a large number of educational and training programmes to students in Pakistan and other countries. More recently it has started short online courses to provide students an opportunity to access world class education and training at a pace which suites their work and personal life. All these courses are extremely important for continued professional development, capacity building besides improving their skills and knowledge base. Today’s Memorandum of Understanding with ILE, he said, will further strengthen these training programmes. These courses, Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan further stated are heavily subsidized to help students and professionals who otherwise cannot afford such training opportunities. One of the objectives of HAS is to support unprivileged communities in training and educate public health professionals which will go a long way in improving the healthcare of the communities. The idea behind establishing the Office of Research Innovations and Commercialization (ORIC) Dr. Shahzad further stated was to come up with innovations and then exploit if for commercial purposes which is only possible if there is a close cooperation and collaboration of academic institutions with the industry. However, unfortunately at present the academic institutions have been taken away from the industry. HAS domain includes public health which covers all aspects related to health like health insurance, digital health and numerous other community based programmes. CSR initiative by the industry in Pakistan needs to be looked into. At present what is happening is that industry spends some percentage of its profit for some social work which is not in line with its actual spirit. CSR by the industry Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan opined must provide some relief to the public and the community at large. There is a need for some meaningful cooperation and collaboration between the academic institutions and industry which should also help the academic institutions to generate funds so that they are not dependent on government all the time. All over the world research is conducted in collaboration with the industry. For example, just look at Wellcome Trust and numerous other such institutions which provide funding for research all over the world. Let us do something for this country and whatever we do must be open and transparent, Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan remarked.

Health Services Academy Islamabad signed an MOU with Institute of Leadership Excellence (ILE) on
October 21st for training of healthcare professionals in Healthcare Leadership. Picture show
Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan VC HSA and Mr. Haroon Qassim from PharmEvo on behalf of ILE
exchanging the documents after the signing ceremony.

He also referred to the unethical marketing practices by the pharmaceutical trade and industry and pointed out that now the government has taken its notice at the highest level. Steps are being taken in consultation with the stake holders to finalize some guidelines and interventions. If the industry makes some profits, it will make further investment and it will not only provide more job opportunities but also develop people. Government cannot do everything, it is the private sector which has to come forward and play its role in the economic development of Pakistan. Communism and socialism, have all vanished and just look even at China, it has made tremendous progress and all this development which has made China a world economic power became possible through the private sector, he added. Continuing Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan stated that nowhere in the world State involves itself in service delivery and whenever it does, its prime objective of policy making is neglected and suffers.

Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan was of the view that we must produce healthcare professionals, doctors, nurses, paramedical to match with international standards and then export this human resource. India and Philippines did it. ORIC at HAS is headed by Dr. Mubashar. We used to have just twenty-three students but now we have over three hundred students and we have also maintained student teacher ratio. We have twenty-two faculty members with PhD qualifications. HAS also plans to develop Patient Safety programmes to benefit the patients. We are organizing numerous courses and workshops. Our annual budget which used to be just one hundred twenty-four billion rupees has now increased to six hundred billion rupees and it became possible through donations, collaboration with other institutions and organizations at home and abroad. HAS objectives as per its Act include training in all fields for health professionals, do Research and we also serve as Health Policy Think Tank for the government and it is housed here in the HAS. Dr. Shahzad feels that during the last two decades we have given too much importance to producing specialists which will never improve healthcare. In fact, what we need is Generalists and not Specialists. All over the world now there is emphasis on producing Primary Healthcare Specialists which takes care of the patient as a whole. This is now getting importance even in the developed world, he remarked.

Group photograph taken at the MOU signing ceremony between Health Services Academy Islamabad and
Institute of Leadership Excellence (ILE) shows Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan VC HSA and Mr. Haroon Qassim from
ILE alongwith other participants from both these institutions.

Health Services Academy which was established in 1988 got an autonomous status in 2002 while it got full charter of a University in 2018. We are producing PhDs in public health, it is recognized by the CPSP for its various training programmes for postgraduates. We have established linkage with various international universities like Harvard, Oxford and Cambridge universities. We are running Prime Minister’s Health Insurance programme, National Health Programme and since 2018 Sehat Sahulat programme which is going to be launched now at the national level by the Prime Minister of Pakistan on December 31st 2021. We brought this health insurance programme from Germany.

Some of the training programmes which Health Services Academy runs include Postgraduate Diploma in Health Management, Postgraduate Diploma in Health Insurance Management, Diploma in Public Health, Postgraduate Diploma in Applied Health Economics, GIS Mapping and Spatial Analysis. All these programmes are of one year’s duration. Short duration pharmaceutical courses include Pharmaceutical Product Management, Pharma Business Management, Pharma Field Sales Management, Professional Medical Representatives, Bioethics Certificate Course, Pharmaceutical Selling Skills, Community Retail Pharmacy, Hospital Pharmacy Business Management, Pharma Neutra, Herbal Regulatory Management, Certified Innovative Leader, Industrial Pharmacy Management, Certified Entrepreneur Pharmacist. Other training courses include Diploma in Professional HRM in Healthcare, Diploma in Healthcare Administration while CPD course cover Art of Managing Conflicts, Managing Multiple Projects, Hospital Safety Management. Quality Assurance Management in HealthCare besides Effective Communication and Presentation Skills.

Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan it may be mentioned here is a graduate of King Edward Medical College 1991. Later he did MBA and MSc followed by PhD in Management Sciences. He is a Fellow of Royal College of Physicians London as well as Glasgow UK. He is a man with Vision who has the competence and ability of implementing strategies using indigenous cost effective interventions.

Mr. Haroon Qassim Managing Director of PharmEvo in his speech on this occasion thanked Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan for proving this opportunity for collaboration to build professional capacity of the healthcare professionals. PharmEvo Mr. Haroon Qassim said, look forward to this partnership and feel ILE could contribute greatly to the learning and development of healthcare professionals across Pakistan. Sharing the vision behind this unique initiative, he said, we have been around for over two decades, and specifically known for our focused CSR initiatives for the society. Driven by our vision of promoting ‘a’ healthier society’, we constantly look for opportunities to work for not just the physical, but mental well-being of every individual we come across. The same approach led to the foundation of Institute of Leadership Excellence (ILE).

Continuing Mr. Haroon Qassim said, as evident by multiple studies and backed by solid data, the health care professionals in Pakistan are indeed the best in their fields, professionally trained, and best suited to offer quality treatment to the patients. Yet another aspect to an HCP’s holistic growth is the development of soft skills. In addition to the technical skills and medical knowledge, HCPs need to be equally proficient in soft skills like Emotional Expressiveness, EQ, Self-Confidence, Empathy, Active Listening, Freedom from Internal Conflict and Exceptional Communication including many more.

These skills are crucial for any HCP, especially Healthcare Leaders in Pakistan who face challenges of an over-burdened healthcare system. Good health programs and organizations achieve results under challenging conditions and in changing environment, when they develop leaders who can effectively lead and manage. Inspirational leadership in healthcare sector has the potential to improve staff morale, enhance the service levels and increase in patient satisfaction. ILE’s purpose is to create a critical mass of healthcare leaders to play a role in building a healthier society through capacity building and leadership training.

We are proud to have become the first platform in Pakistan to be certified by the Franklin Covey institute for ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’ training for healthcare professionals. ILE also has a Leaders Club for healthcare executives that provides content for learning and intellectual engagement. We also collaborated with Talisium to provide leadership courses tailored for healthcare professionals from prestigious institutes such as Royal College of Physicians (UK), NHS Academy of Leaders (UK) and others. These efforts have resulted in improvement of health outcomes, improvement in the quality of healthcare services, enhanced patient safety, and cost efficiency.

ILE has received recognition from international management and marketing gurus. Recently ILE was included as a case study in Philip Kotler’s upcoming book “Essentials of Modern Marketing”. We thank all our stakeholders for their efforts in making ILE what it is today. With Allah’s blessings, our plan is to establish Centers of Healthcare Leadership (CoHLs) in 100 institutes across Pakistan in the next 5 years. And our journey continues as we look forward to expansion and partnership opportunities such as this one with Health Services Academy, he concluded.

 Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid Chief Editor Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences presenting his latest
book on “Medical History-Written in Haste” to Dr. Shahzad Ali Khan Dean Public Health and
Acting Vice Chancellor of Health Services Academy at Islamabad on October 21st, 2021.