The Martin Dow – Indus Hospital & Health Network Community Health Center is located on Baba Island on the outskirts of Karachi. The Community Health Center provides basic healthcare facilities to the people of the adjacent islands.
Dr. Samra Zaidi is the resident doctor at the Martin Dow – Indus Hospital & Health Network Community Health Center who travels every day to the island to treat patients. There are no roads or proper transportation routes from Karachi to the island, so Dr. Samra and other Indus staff travel via boat five days a week to attend to the patients.
Her accomplishments, technical savviness, and unmatched passion has already garnered her recognition from her peers and superiors, but her penchant for going above and beyond the call of duty to help her patients sets her apart from the rest.
Early life and education
A Medical Officer in the Family Medicine Department of The Indus Hospital, Korangi Campus, Dr. Samra earned her bachelors from a private university before moving on to attain her MCPS from the Indus Hospital & Health Network (IHHN). She is currently into her third year with IHHN, having spent two years as a resident and the past four months as a locum medical officer.
At The Indus Hospital, Korangi Campus, she has been part of the JHQC granule trial for COVID patients. Although she was comfortable in her office at the hospital, a meeting with her superiors and management allowed her to apply her skills for patients who could not travel to the city for treatment.
The idea seemed difficult in the beginning as she would be required to report to the hospital every morning before being transported to the Island. The lack of basic infrastructure and facilities in the village was another issue. Her reluctance vanished when she visited the island and witnessed the sub-standard conditions, the community is living in and she decided to take up the opportunity.
Working at Baba Island
Dr. Samra noticed that the lack of knowledge of basic hygiene practices constituted a considerable portion of the patient cases. Patients were in desperate need of medical attention and health education. Most issues they face are hygiene-related as they consume contaminated food and water. The lack of fresh fruits, vegetables, and meat also causes damage to their health.
She understands that it’s not enough to treat patients but to educate them and create awareness to practice better hygiene. She thinks that more healthcare resources should be allocated as patients from surrounding islands also visit the clinic.
“I am glad to be here and able to help them. They have suffered for far too long, and the work we’re doing fulfills my personal and professional commitments to help all those in need and educate them to maintain a hygienic life.”