Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education

Front Page



UK Politics







Talking Point

In Depth

On Air

Low Graphics

Tuesday, August 24, 1999 Published at 13:42 GMT 14:42 UK

World: South Asia

Pakistan tackles Y2K in health sector

The Aga Khan University and Hospital: Leading the Y2K campaign

The Pakistani Government's task force on the millennium bug has rapped the health sector over the knuckles for not taking Y2K seriously enough.

Bugtown UK
In an interview with BBC News Online, the Director of the official Pakistan Computer Bureau (PCB), Chaudhary Zafar, said he had tried to explain the gravity of the problem to a meeting of health professionals on Monday.

Only one representative from the four provinces turned up to the meeting at the Health Ministry in the capital, Islamabad.

[ image: X-ray machines could be affected]
X-ray machines could be affected
"It is true that the extent of computerisation in Pakistan is less than America," said Mr Zafar.

"But the chips and embedded systems are there, especially in diagnostic equipment in hospitals, such as CAT scans and X-ray machines."

The PCB task force was set up to ensure that "all critical systems" in both government and the business community are "Y2K-ready".

The PCB Website concedes that "some business managers and administrators still do not fully appreciate the complexity of the problem and the seriousness of the consequences that can result from lack of Y2K compliance".

Some good news

Mr Zafar told BBC News Online, however, that there were signs of a more positive response from health officials.

[ image: Lecturers have been spreading the word about Y2K]
Lecturers have been spreading the word about Y2K
"They have created a task force to compile an inventory of computers and prepare guidelines for hospitals, clinics and labs," he said. "It will definitely be ready by October."

He quoted one senior ministry official as saying he was "scared about the situation".

The latest drive will be led by the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) in Islamabad and the Aga Khan University Medical College in Karachi, Mr Zafar said.

The PCB has organised a series of seminars across the country in recent months to spread its campaign message.

The bureau's Director-General, Dr Ijaz Khawaja, has been addressing one such seminar in Karachi.

Advanced options | Search tips

Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©

Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia

Relevant Stories

28 Jul 99 | South Asia
India's Y2K woes

22 Jun 99 | Middle East
US warplanes bomb Iraqi facilities

08 Jun 99 | UK
Drive to beat Y2K panic

Internet Links

Pakistan Computer Bureau

BBC Millennium Bug Information

US Senate Committee on Y2K

Aga Khan University Medical College, Karachi

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

In this section

Sharif: I'm innocent

India's malnutrition 'crisis'

Tamil rebels consolidate gains

From Sport
Saqlain stars in Aussie collapse

Pakistan fears Afghan exodus

Hindu-Buddhist conference in Nepal

Afghan clerics issue bin Laden fatwa

Culture awards at Asian festival

Gandhi pleads for husband's killer

UN condemns Afghan bombing

Gandhi prize for Bangladeshi