Changing Face of Health Care

April 25, 2008

by Hana Shams Ahmed

Overcrowded wards inside a public hospital.

It is like entering a posh hotel. Outside the lawns are immaculately groomed. The visitor is greeted with a heartfelt smile and a bow by the well-dressed guard. Inside the fully air-conditioned large lobby there are comfortable couches, a large screen television and a breathtaking interior. Large signs written in English tell you exactly where you can get the particular information you need. Smartly dressed attendants working round the clock make sure that not a speck of dirt appears inside the four walls. For a moment a visitor can forget that she is actually inside a hospital in Bangladesh. For a patient, if a part of the treatment is to feel that he is in a place where he will be taken care of, then these designer hospitals are doing a great job. Read the rest of this entry »


Accident or Negligence?

January 25, 2008

by Hana Shams Ahmed
[Daily Star, January 25, 2008]

Baby Afia

When Shafiqul Islam admitted his sick baby girl to one of the best cardiac hospitals in Bangladesh he was somewhat relieved. He thought that if his baby who had a congenital heart problem had any chance of survival it would be at this hospital. And he was right. Lt. Col. Dr. Nurunnahar Fatema, the clinical and interventional child cardiac specialist who did a septostomy at Labaid Cardiac Hospital on 45-day-old Afia spent four hours at the operation theatre and the operation was a success. But Afia’s operation was done at the very last moment. Another day longer would have taken her life. But her troubles had begun much earlier. Read the rest of this entry »

Life After HIV

December 1, 2006

by Hana Shams Ahmed
[Daily Star Cover Story, December 1, 2006]

Habiba Akter, founder of Ashar Alo Society

35-year-old Mahbub (not his real name) was diagnosed HIV positive while he was working in the Middle East and 17 years on he looks just as healthy as the next person. Many people might find that hard to comprehend, as the overriding notion is that a person diagnosed HIV positive is virtually sitting on his/her deathbed. Mahbub is perhaps the perfect example of the contrary. Read the rest of this entry »