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Indus Hospital, Aga Khan Hospital, and Shalamar Medical College Collaborate to Conduct Capacity-Building Workshops on Clinical Ethics

Indus Hospital & Health Network (IHHN) collaborated for the first time with Aga Khan University Hospital and Shalamar Medical & Dental College to organize Advance Clinical Ethics Consultations – Capacity Building Workshops. These workshops, held at the national level on June 17th and 24th, 2023, aimed to enhance the capabilities of clinicians and members of Clinical/Hospital Ethics Committees in handling complex ethical dilemmas.

The workshops offered attendees a unique opportunity to delve into various clinical ethical consultation methods and structures while honing the skills required to become proficient ethics consultants. The capacity-building initiatives aimed to strengthen the ethical decision-making process within healthcare settings.

At IHHN, Clinical Ethics Consultations (CEC) is a standing committee under the Medical Directorate. Aligned with the organization’s vision and mission of providing free-of-cost quality healthcare for all, the CEC emphasizes the crucial connection between ethics and quality in healthcare provision. By adhering to established ethical norms and standards, healthcare providers can ensure the delivery of high-quality care, thereby addressing significant ethical concerns.

The CEC operates in three key domains to enhance healthcare quality. Firstly, it conducts ethical reviews of policies related to Do-Not-Resuscitate (DNR) orders, patient rights, and end-of-life decisions. Secondly, it educates clinical and non-clinical staff on matters of informed consent, privacy, and confidentiality. Lastly, the CEC provides consultations and guidance on challenging ethical issues and life-altering decisions.

The workshops took place in Karachi and Lahore, attracting healthcare providers who serve as members of Hospital Ethics Committees and actively participate in Clinical Ethical Consultations within their respective institutions. Many participants hailed from IHHN’s managed hospitals in Punjab (under public-private partnership), including the Tehsil Headquarter Hospital campuses in Manawan, Sabzazar, Raiwind, and Kahna Nau.

Renowned speakers from all three collaborating institutions graced the workshops, including Dr. Sarosh Saleem from Shalamar Medical & Dental College, Dr. Nuzhat Irfan Malik from Indus Hospital & Health Network, and Dr. Atif Waqar from The Aga Khan University. In addition to engaging case-based discussions and informative panel presentations, the workshops covered the significance of clinical ethical committees within healthcare organizations and provided insights into the structure and function of such committees.

Through this collaborative effort, healthcare professionals received valuable training and guidance, empowering them to navigate complex ethical challenges in their daily practices. The workshops represented a significant step toward strengthening the ethical framework of healthcare institutions and ensuring the delivery of ethical, patient-centered care across the nation.

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