Inspiration

This Pakistani doctor provides free medical care to hundreds of thousands of people each year

Dr. Abdul Rizvi

WRITTEN BY

4 minutes read

Shining ray of hope for thousands of patients, Dr. Adeeb Rizvi, provides free medical care to the ill and needy people of Pakistan.

Unlike the glistening public and private hospitals with heavy fee structures for even the basic medical check-up, Dr. Rizvi provides excellent medical care to needy patients, free of cost.

People see him as a savior and come from all over Pakistan to wait outside the lustrous transplant center, Karachi to gain medical care.

79 years old doctor and humanitarian built the largest treatment networks in South Asia called Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation (SIUT). SIUT is supported by many notable charities and it has successfully treated millions in just a period of four years.

Last year more than 300 transplants and 260,000 dialysis sessions were carried. The hospital also provides follow-up treatment and medication, all for free. Dr. Rizvi lives on the philosophy

Every human being… has got a right to access healthcare, to live with dignity

SIUT is a part of this belief. Where government may not fulfill all the needs of SIUT, 30% of their budget comes from the government.

Founded in 1974, SIUT faced a challenge in the conservative Muslim society to convince people for donations. Many people still consider organ donation against Islamic sharia. He tried to get the clerics and Muslim scholars on his side.

Luckily they all agreed… that organ donation is quite Islamic and should be done

Organ donation used to be a taboo topic back then and lack of awareness was “pushing back our progress”, says Dr. Rizvi.

SIUT is the remarkable medical center in Karachi. Its efficiency, cleanliness and disciplined systems with no discrimination among the patients speaks volumes about the quality of health care provided there.

A dialysis patient, who is awaiting a trial at the court for an alleged crime, is treated same as all the others. Dr. Rizvi says he is treated with

Same type of food, same type of bed

While for some people the culture of equality is indigestible, Dr. Rizvi even received some threats. Explaining how he handles such situations, he said

“We sit and talk to them and we just show them that, see this man, we are treating him, he is like you and me. Should I let him die?”

The hospital takes massive care of the mental well-being of its patients which is at high risk for long term patients.

The pediatric ward for young patients have sky-blue walls painted with cheerful murals to give a soothing and cheerful environment.

A dedicated medical social worker, Sanober Ambreen, lights up the mood at the wards and helps patients be calm and peaceful during medical procedures. She engages them with music classes, painting lessons and small talent hunts.
Dr. Rizvi has no plans of retirement or stopping with the dialysis center. He said,

My colleagues, they are working (the) same way. Most of them have become hypertensive, I have not

He looks forward towards treating cancer patients and bringing state-of-the-art technology to provide best medical care possible. In his opinion cancer treatment is “doable”.

Millions of Pakistanis owe their lives to the dedication and perseverance of Dr. Rizvi and many will benefit from SIUT in the years to come.