Monday, November 16, 2015

[Pakistani Culture Workshop] Health and the Pakistani Community

Multiculturalism in Action 2015-16
Pakistani Culture Workshop: Making a Change for the Better

Session 4: Health and the Pakistani Community

Speakers: Dr. Nazia Shahid and Ms. Asma Batool

The Multiculturalism in Action Project organized a public seminar entitled Health and the Pakistani Community on 7 November, 2015 at The Chinese University of Hong Kong.
Prof. Siumi Maria Tam, Director of the Project, gave an introduction to issues related to healthcare among the Pakistanis in Hong Kong. Cultural and social factors, such as language barrier and lack of information, affected the quality and frequency of healthcare seeking. Many Pakistani patients found it difficult to communicate with Cantonese-speaking clinic staff, including the doctors and nurses. Some did not know there were free interpretation services provided in government hospitals and clinics. On the other hand, the lifestyle and occupations of Pakistanis in Hong Kong triggered specific health problems. Obesity, for example, was common among Pakistanis because their diet contained high fat and sugar content.
Prof. Tam giving an introduction
The Hospital Authority and some non-government organizations have started special service programs to meet these needs. For example, ethnic minority languages were used in response cue cards, disease information sheets, and patient consent forms in public hospitals and clinics. The United Christian Nethersole Community Health Service and HKSKH Lady MacLehose Centre have been providing outreach and public education for the general public. Prof. Tam encouraged the audience to think whether these services were accessible to those in need, and to what extent these services were effective and helpful.
Our guest speaker, Dr. Nazia Shahid delivered an informative presentation on the general medical issues among the Pakistanis. She highlighted the fact that 37.6% of Pakistanis were born in Hong Kong, which was a relatively high ratio when compared with other ethnic minority groups in Hong Kong. First, Dr. Nazia explained some basic concepts on how Islam understood “health” and “disease”. Islam perceived health and illness as balance and imbalance of a body respectively. The Quran has provided guidelines to Muslims to stay healthy, such as one should maintain good personal hygiene, avoid drinking alcohol, and eating halal food. She also explained the concept of “life” in Islam, and the belief in afterlife - death was a transition for the soul to depart the body and enter another realm. Islam helped to comfort Muslim patients and their families who perceived illness as a test or punishment from God, and provided a spiritual healing power through prayers and meditation to ask forgiveness from God.
Dr. Nazia giving a presentation
Dr. Nazia explained that it was mainly non-communicable diseases such as obesity, heart attack, and high blood pressure that affected Pakistanis in Hong Kong. Females were more vulnerable to these diseases because they were not encouraged to go outside so they rarely had physical activities. Limited information on healthcare, and an oily diet, led to heart attacks, high blood pressure, and obesity. Compared to their counterparts in Pakistan, those in Hong Kong had better health in general, as they had adjusted to a steamed cuisine and more attention on their body shape. Pregnancy was another factor affecting the health of women. As each pregnancy made it harder to get back to pre-pregnant physical conditions, when Pakistani women needed to bear more children according to the cultural concept that children were a symbol of fortune, Pakistani women were more at risk due to childbearing. Dr. Nazia believed it was essential to educate fellow Pakistanis on dietary hazards and raise awareness on leading an active and healthy life, especially among the women.  
According to Dr. Nazia, Pakistani men suffered more from occupation-related accidents, such as in construction sites, as little attention had been paid to safety in the workplace. Moreover, Pakistani children in Hong Kong were often obese because they consumed lots of junk food and frequented fast food shops.
Dr. Nazia continued her presentation by discussing the socio-economic factors affecting the Pakistanis’ healthcare seeking behavior. Language was a big problem, as not all Pakistanis in Hong Kong could speak and understand Cantonese and English. Even if they know these languages, it may not be good enough to communicate in medical terms. Dr. Nazia mentioned that the interpretation services for ethnic minorities were not always satisfactory as some interpreters were not well trained. This topic was further discussed during the panel session, which will be mentioned below.
Gender was another factor especially affecting the healthcare seeking behavior of Pakistani women in Hong Kong. Muslim women preferred to have female doctors or nurses in order to follow modesty requirements in regard to opposite sex. However, in Hong Kong, doctors and nurses were often males. Muslim women would feel very uncomfortable if a male doctor conducted prenatal checkup on them. Dr. Nazia advised the government should pay more efforts in training female doctors and to create a user-friendly environment to help all patients with their needs. On the other hand, it was a tradition for Muslim baby boys to be circumcised at the earliest. However, most doctors in Hong Kong had little awareness of this and were not trained about circumcision. It usually took a long time to wait for circumcision in public hospitals, while the fee in private hospitals was high. Compared to the United States, where circumcision was routinely done to meet the religious need of the Jewish faith, Dr. Nazia suggested that the Hong Kong government could pay more attention to the special needs of ethnic minorities.
Following a short break, a panel discussion was carried out. Dr. Nazia was joined by Ms. Asma Batool, a Community Health Officer in South Asian Health Support Program United Christian Nethersole Community Health Service, who gave us some ideas on the limitations of clinics in Hong Kong, for example, the lack of prayer rooms, and lack of nursing facilities. Ms. Batool believed that there should be more cultural sensitivity training for frontline doctors and nurses.  
Panel discussion
The focus of discussion then turned to interpretation services for ethnic minorities, and everyone actively expressed their opinions. Some in the audience questioned the effectiveness of interpretation services as these were seen to be passive action as patients needed to get approval from the hospitals in advance. Clinic staff often asked out-patients to bring family members or friends who know Cantonese to translate for them. Moreover, interpretation in the emergency room was not available. Some patients even did not know how to apply for the service.
Pakistani guests expressing their opinions during the panel discussion
Representatives from Hong Kong TransLingual Services (HKTS), Mr. Ryan Choi and Ms. Candy Hui, opined that the culture in public hospitals, which emphasized time and cost efficiency, has restricted the effectiveness of interpretation services. Some of the reasons why hospitals discouraged the use of interpreters were cost minimization, and limited consultation time. Mr. Choi said that as service provider, they were trying hard to monitor and improve the quality of staff. The latest statistics showed that there were 800-900 interpretation cases per month last year, and the number was increasing as more patients knew about the services. HKTS also organized talks and sharing sessions in public hospitals to promote their services and to heighten the cultural awareness of hospital staff. Lastly, Mr. Choi reminded service users to be punctual to make sure the services were properly used.
After the fruitful discussion, Prof. Tam concluded that although there were structural and other factors affecting the healthcare seeking experiences of ethnic minorities in Hong Kong, many efforts had been done to improve the situation. Both healthcare service users and providers needed to know their rights and responsibilities to make the healthcare system in Hong Kong a more user-friendly and effective one.

(First Row, from left) Dr. Nazia, Ms. Batool and Prof. Tam, together with guests and participants of the Workshop


  1. Thanks for posting this info. I just want to let you know that I just check out your site and I find it very interesting and informative. I can't wait to read lots of your posts. hcg drops for weight loss

  2. I think this is an informative post and it is very useful and knowledgeable. therefore, I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article. Upper cervical care

  3. You completed a few fine points there. I did a search on the subject and found nearly all persons will go along with with your blog. tmj treatment tampa

  4. I like your post

    When you will visit Rate Your Clinic facility you will discover a wide range of data that will help you choose which center or clinic you ought to get treated. You can discover healing centers in Sharjah, best hospital in dubai and doctor's facilities in Dubai. In this site you will discover all the data to help you settle on the correct choices.

  5. yes if your service is best people will take your service.for visit my website click here LAHORE GIRLS .

  6. Royal Escort Agency Pakistan – Book Royal Escort for Massage Services 03228855445
    When you choose the Escorts Service Pakistan, you can choose them again as you can see this only after choosing this. The teens are best if you need to get an uptempo conversations also, as the Escorts in Islamabad, know it all how they can jump you using their words and by the help with their naughty talk when they are spending the time with you, as for sure they do it as the best also.
    The Call women in Lahore are also perfect if you are buying a perfect dance spouse as they will do it around good if you need it as the best time of the yr, as they will be your best friend also. The Escorts in Pakistan knows it as how they may please you, and with this is also easy for them if you are looking to incorporate some great fun that can help you to acquire the best time pass also.
    You can book your escorts in Lahore whenever you want, but keep in mind that the charges will be different, and also on the choice that you have made. Once you have made your choice of the VIP escorts in Lahore you will surely wish to spend some more quality and peacefulness time with the woman that you have chosen.

  7. Hyderabad High Profile is one of the mainly fashionable and trustworthy companion services in Hyderabad. ESCORTS IN LAHORE

  8. Pakistani escorts is expected to be intelligent, educated, well mannered, and of course beautiful. These stringent requirements are necessary because visitors hire social escorts in Pakistan for all sorts of different functions. From casual functions such as social gathering, birthday parties, to make formal events such as business, functions etc.
    Our Girls are young, beautiful, and socially amicable are rare. For this reason, oriental Pakistani girls escort and models are always in high demand.

    Our services are prompt in Pakistani escorts, expected to be intelligent, reasonably educated, well mannered and of course very charming and beautiful. We keep female escort in Pakistan like the major cities;

    Vip Escorts in Lahore

    Vip Escorts in Islamabad

    Vip Escorts in Karachi

    Vip Escorts in Pakistan

    Whatsapp / Call +92 321 4699 343

  9. I like this post, please also look at this website Forbmax Interior. The basic idea is to give awareness of our new interior designing works and solutions.

  10. Distict and Session Courts Faisalabad Jobs 2018 has been announced District Courts and Session CourtsFaisalabad Jobs has been announced New Jobs 2018 announced in Roznama Daily Express Newspaper Date 08-03-2018.

  11. Get best idea. about our services. We have best Escorts in Lahore services available for fun. You will be glad.

  12. Get top Model services here.
    We have Got best Services of Pakistani Escorts in Dubai .
    By the way you have an awesome blog.

  13. Awesome theme. Awesome art, Awesome work, Awesome content and just awesome blog. YOu can have Escorts in Islamabad services. You are a genius.

  14. Holy Pakistan provides information, awareness, education, Islam, social cause, business, health and fitness tips, and much more. Keep Sporting.

  15. Escorts in Islamabad +92 3054411595

    We encourage you to peruse through our gallery and be dazzled by the beauty of the beautiful
    girls on Pakistani Escorts. Whether you are interested in hiring one for companion, dinner in an
    intimate Pakistani restaurant, you have come to the right site. What’s more, we have the best girls
    to accompany you to that corporate function. We have girls that will be on your side for that special
    occasion and also help you have a real time during a lively night out in Islamabad. We happily
    accommodate requests for extended visits; we work with a team of elite escorts who make the best
    travel companions allowing you to make weekend plans in and out of Pakistan. Pick an escort from
    our Pakistani Escorts gallery, and she will cater to your diverse tastes. We have girls of all sizes
    and looks. From thin, small breasted, big breasted to thick escorts that will fulfill
    your desires.
    Escort in islamabad
    +92 3054411595

  16. If you are looking for something extraordinary in your life, then you surely need our unique Lahore Escorts services that are available in our VIP section. However, in order to do so, you should tell us what you are looking for in the girls and what type of babe you need. We are here to offer discreet and professional services to all our clients so that they can leave us satisfied. Our Islamabad Escorts beautiful girls are here to unhinge your desires and allow you the explore the real meaning of coming to the planet earth. When you will spend time in the arms of our beautiful Islamabad call girls, you will realize the truth of real love. They have set up very high standards that their competitors can’t match up. So, you need to book one of them as soon as possible.

  17. Escort servcice in islamabad +92 3054411595

    Not only are our girls’ elite escorts, but they also provide call services.
    They cater to the clientele in Islamabad in all affluent areas. We also have girls that
    offer outcall services. The most stylish escort will accompany you outside Pakistan happy
    to fulfill your desires. If you’re visiting Pakistan for business or pleasure, carve out
    some time and spend a fun filled trip with our beautiful and charming international escorts.
    Besides, a vast majority of our girls are bilingual, trilingual and quadrilingual and will
    be happy to be your companion. islamabad escorts accord you the chance to book any girl you
    desire in advance. We have a well-orchestrated online platform that caters to all esteemed
    Escort servcice in islamabad
    +92 3054411595

  18. Hi Dude, I read your Blog completely! Such a nice information shared with us and I hope you will share more information about Pakistani Culture! Thanks for Sharing
    Escorts in Islamabad
    Islamabad Escorts

  19. Such an impressive information shared with us. Keep me update your future posts. Thanks for sharing.
    Escorts in Dubai
    Dubai Escorts
    Pakistani escorts in dubai

  20. Really thank full to you for sharing such a authentic information with us!
    Kindly keep me update your future posts. And also sent your email address. I want to ask something in personal.
    Escorts in Dubai
    Dubai Escorts
    Pakistani escorts in dubai
    indian escorts in dubai

  21. Such an Amazing Erotic post was written by you! Thanks for share with us! You can also visit our site for getting more information about Escorts
    Islamabad Escorts


  22. All the gorgeous ladies have interesting individualities, charming and their outstanding elegance makes Lahore Escorts the most top level ladies to go along with you in the most enhanced and elegant cultures. Lahore Escort are extremely too wonderful to look at, amazing and certified who knows etiquette to meet your wish at the best possible level. Escort in Lahore are the wonderful, charming and adoring damsels just one call away from you.

  23. Dana Shivam Hospital of Jaipur, Rajasthan, India is among the best hospital of India from the past 3 years for its services in Cardiology, other than this also giving its services in neuro-surgery, gastroenterology, ENT, Gynecology, Orthopedic and 14 other services.

  24. We respect the trust which our clients have had on us and our Top Escorts in Karachi along these lines agreeing to that we have held their names under the window decoration. Karachi escorts Regardless, through these comments, we are to a great degree happy with our accomplishments and should need to keep this going for some more years. Reasons why our client base values our administrations and VIP show escorts Karachi and Call Girls in Karachi. Escorts in Karachi Purchaser dependability is our best need. We have reliable sorted out our clients monstrously and endeavored to keep up their attentiveness in the most master of conduct.