Monday, February 7, 2011

Beacon Of Light-Dr. Abdul Gaffar Billoo (Sitara-e-Imtiaz)

Dr. Abdul Ghaffar Billoo is a renowned pediatrician, who was born at Junagrah. He graduated from Dow Medical College Karachi in 1959 and later did D.C.H. & M.R.C.P. from Glasgow, and F.R.C.P. from Edinburgh in 1986. He has served as Professor and Head of the Pediatrics Department, Dow Medical College. He remained as Dean Faculty of Medicine, University of Karachi for three years. He is also advisor/member of many national and international organizations boards/ agencies. Presently he is associated with Aga Khan university Hospital.

Dr. A. Ghaffar Billoo started his education as a free scholar. After partition his family settled in Sulckur. Soft-hearted, Dr. Billoo was distressed at the high rate of infant mortality. He went to London and obtained Diploma in Child Diseases from the School of Tropical Medicines and obtained his MRCP. He was the first Asian to have been appointed Child Specialist in Scotland. However, he preferred to serve the children of his own country and therefore, returned to Pakistan.

After returning to Pakistan, he worked as Honorary Registrar and later worked with Dr. Shaukat Ali Sayed as Research Physician in which capacity he carried out research on 500 cases. This was the largest research work which has been undertaken by a single person. He worked in various hospitals in Karachi and finally became the Principal of Dow Medical College in which capacity he looked after the Children Ward of the Civil Hospital. He tested the oral therapy in cases of diarrhoea in children very successfully. He submitted his findings and report on oral therapy to the World Health Organisation. He was made member of the Global Advisory Committee on diarrhoea and his suggestions to give patients ORS was accepted. He set up camps in the remote Thar area of Sindh, where with his colleagues he provided medical treatment to local patients.

Dr. Billoo is the founder Member and Chairman Health and Nutrition Development Society (HANDS), which is one of the most active N.G.O working in the rural and urban areas of Sindh. Dr. Billoo has presented more than hundred papers in various national and international conferences/seminars/ symposiums and there are more than two dozen publications of international repute to his credit.

Dr. Billoo is serving as Chairman Department of Pediatrics at The Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi from September 1998.

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