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Catholic physicians combat lack of medical care

Country has only half the practitioners needed

A girl in Dhaka receives a medical check-up A girl in Dhaka receives a medical check-up
  • ucanews.com reporter, Dhaka
  • Bangladesh
  • September 6, 2012
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Catholic doctors organized a free medical clinic in Dhaka yesterday to mark the fourth anniversary of the Church-based Association of Bangladesh Catholic Doctors (ABCD).

More than 130 patients received free medical check-ups and prescriptions at the Church-run Bottomley Homes Orphanage in the city's Tejgaon district.

“In overpopulated Bangladesh it is really tough for the government to offer medical services to everyone.” said ABCD secretary Dr. Edward Pallab Rozario. “Private doctors need to find some time to offer free services.”

According to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the country’s medical practitioners are capable of serving only 54 percent of the country’s more than 152 million people.

There are 0.28 registered doctors per 1,000 people in Bangladesh, according to the ABCD.

“I feel every doctor, government or private, should have some social responsibility,” Rozario said. “The government spends so much money in the making of a doctor. Besides professional services, they need to pay back the debt by helping the government.”

ABCD was set up in 2008 with support from Catholic Bishops’ Episcopal Commission for Health Care. It has 85 members and organizes free medical camps and distributes free medicine to poor and destitute people across the country throughout the year.

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