KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Najib Razak yesterday said an additional allocation of RM3 million would be provided to improve the facilities at the Federal Territories Islamic Religious Council (MAIWP) – Hospital Selayang Cataract Surgery Centre here in a bid to help the people, especially the underprivileged members of the community.
The prime minister said the allocation was for the procurement of state-of-the-art equipment to enable the centre, located in Jalan Kuching here, to improve its services.
Najib today had a first-hand look at the centre’s facilities and operation during his visit to the centre, which offers its services for as low as RM103 or even free of charge, especially to hardcore poor.
The centre managed by the MAIWP with the cooperation from the hospital is offering its services to the people regardless of their race and religion.
“I’m really impressed with the service. I was made to understand that approximately 30 patients receive efficient treatment for their eye problem here on daily basis,” Najib said in his brief speech at the end of the visit.
Meanwhile, the majority of patients at the centre were surprised to see the prime minister walking in and greeting them during the visit.
Accompanied by Health Director-General Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, Najib also spent time mingling with the patients and the staff and entertained their requests for selfies.
Najib visited each floor of the three-storey centre while being briefed on the service and operations by Ophthalmologist-in-Chief Dr Nor Fariza Ngah.
The prime minister, when tabling the 2018 Budget last October, had announced an allocation of RM27 billion for the construction of new hospitals and upgrading of wards, medical supply and support.
“We will continue this effort. I believe that the allocation will help the centre and its staff to render better services to the people,” he said.
The centre, which began operations on Jan 16, 2013, is manned by seven medical officers, nine nurses and an ophthalmologist, and is open from 8 am to 5 pm daily from Monday to Friday.
Meanwhile, Dr Noor Hisham, via a Facebook posting, said the centre had received 12,100 patients since its establishment in 2013.
“Each patient need only pay RM103 for the surgery, while the underprivileged will be given free treatment. This is compared to a charge of at least RM3,000 if they seek similar treatment at a private hospital or eye clinic,” he said.
Dr Noor Hisham said the centre was the outcome of a smart partnership between MAIWP and the Health Ministry.
He said MAIWP provided the funds to transform the shoplot into the centre and also prepared the equipment for cataract surgery, while the ministry provided a team of eye specialists to give the best possible service to the people at a very reasonable fee. – Bernama