In Karachi, the most populated city in Pakistan, a group of doctors and philanthropists have built a free hospital that runs entirely on donations. The Indus Hospital has served over 3 million patients since it opened in 2007 and they are so dedicated to providing free services, that they don’t even have any way of collecting payment.
Indus Hospital CEO Dr. Abdul Bari Khan says that he and his colleagues were inspired to create the hospital because healthcare is so expensive, and the facilities that existed were often overwhelmed. They were especially motivated to solve this problem after they visited the 1987 Bohri Bazaar bomb blast site and witnessed how difficult it was for people to get treatment.
“In a country like Pakistan where majority of the population is living below the poverty line, quality healthcare has become luxury item rather than a basic need. So only the people blessed with strong financial status can get quality treatment from the private sector. That’s where the not-for-profit hospital came in with the money as donation/ zakat from blessed segment of the society and to utilize it for the treatment of their counterparts,” Khan said.
“Quality healthcare is being provided in Pakistan, however, at very exorbitant prices, some philanthropic organizations are also playing a pivotal role in filling the gap. The Indus Hospital serves to provide quality healthcare at no price at all in order to pitch in towards serving underserved patients,” he added.
The Indus Hospital now has 11 locations throughout Pakistan and has plans to expand further by establishing international chapters in the US, UK, and UAE.
According to the Hospital’s website, over $14 million worth of treatment is given at Indus locations each month.
This project proves that it is possible for people to get decent healthcare without a web of complicated bureaucracies dictating the terms of the treatment.