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Saudi Arabia recognizes Pakistani doctor’s services in COVID-19 fight

Saudi Arabia’s health ministry presented a leadership award and appreciation certificate to a Pakistani doctor, Shahzad Ahmad Mumtaz, for his services as a team leader in the Kingdom’s fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, according to Arab News.

Hailing from Layyah, Mumtaz has been working in Saudi Arabia for the last 18 years.

Shahzad Ahmad Mumtaz, over the phone from Riyadh, told Arab News that the Kingdom’s health ministry, in recognition of his services as head of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at the King Salman Hospital, had given him a leadership award on the country’s national day — September 23.

“At the outset of the pandemic, the COVID-19 mortality rate was very high at the King Salman Hospital. That is the reason why I was brought here as the ICU head to increase the hospital’s capacity to deal with the challenge posed by the pandemic,” he said.

Mumtaz said he succeeded in bringing down these deaths by 10 percent during the last five months with better team management and greater use of modern techniques and technology.

“The mortality rate related to COVID-19 in international ICUs is around 30% since very critical patients are shifted to these units,” he said, adding that he had not taken a single leave and worked nearly 18-20 hours a day since he took charge.

“We received a lot of appreciation from the Saudi health ministry,” he added. “It helped in the surgical treatment of general patients which was stopped due to the influx of COVID-19 patients.”

It is pertinent to mention here that 4,625 people have succumbed to the virus in the Kingdom so far whereas the total number of recoveries stands at 315,636.

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