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UHS Syndicate Approves Proposed Law on Academic Use of Unclaimed Human Bodies

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LAHORE– The Syndicate of University of Health Sciences (UHS) on Monday gave a nod to a proposed law on provision, management and equitable distribution of unclaimed and unidentified human dead bodies for academic purposes. 

The 61st meeting of UHS syndicate was held here with Vice Chancellor Professor Javed Akram in the chair. 

The meeting observed that there should be a proper law for the use and distribution of unidentified human corpses for medical education. On the direction of the Lahore High Court (LHC), former chairman forensic medicine department, King Edward Medical University, Prof. Arif Rasheed Malik and Amicus Curiae appointed by the court, Advocate Noshab A. Khan highlighted important provisions of the proposed Punjab Human Tissue Act-2021.

It was informed that under the proposed Punjab Human Tissue Act 2021, a modern mortuary would be set up at UHS Jinnah Campus where unidentified human corpses would be kept safe. The varsity would have a central position in providing dead bodies to the medical institutes for educational purposes.  After the promulgation of the law, all medical colleges in Punjab would be able to obtain dead bodies from UHS for teaching anatomy to medical students.

The meeting was further told that earlier there was no clear law in this regard. Advocate Shahbaz Akmal Jundran, therefore, filed a petition in the Lahore High Court last year as public interest litigation seeking direction against Punjab government to address this issue. The court resultantly constituted a committee headed by Punjab Chief Secretary in order to pave the way for promulgation of law.

Prof. Javed Akram, on the occasion, said that legislation was urgently needed for the provision of unidentified human corpses to medical colleges. The meeting approved the launch of a two-year master’s degree program in medical journalism.  The creation of new administrative and teaching posts for UHS Jinnah Campus and appointment of new faculty including one professor, two associate professors, 6 assistant professors and 14 lecturers, was also approved.

The meeting was attended by VC University of Education Prof. Talat Naseer Pasha, Principal Sargodha Medical College Prof. Humaira Akram, Prof. Nasir Shah, Prof. Nadia Naseem, Dr. Saqib Mehmood whereas Prof Sajid Maqbool, Prof. Waheed ul Hammed, and Dr. Asad Zaheer participated online. Representatives of Punjab Health and Finance departments also attended the meeting.— PRESS RELEASE