New Delhi: In a first, India's apex body authorised to provide information, inspect and license healthcare services will now help hospitals in Pakistan in getting accreditation.

National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers will soon help four hospitals in Pakistan including two major government hospitals.

Dr Giridhar J Gyani, CEO, National Accreditation Body for Hospitals said, "Four hospitals have shown interest in accreditation by NABH. It is in the pre-assessment stage. The two government hospitals include the National Institute for Child Health and Aga Khan University Hospital and the private ones are the Indus hospital and Memon hospital."

It all began with the initiative of the 'Aman ki Asha' a campaign for peace between India and Pakistan.

"We went there as part of the Aman Ki Asha campaign. We introduced them to the idea behind the birth of NABH. They were so very impressed that now officials from two of the private hospitals are visiting us soon for initiating the accreditation process. Lots of changes and standards ought to be met by hospitals before they are given an NABH accreditation. These hospitals are aware of it," Dr Zainab Zaidi, assistant director, NABH said.

Gyani said that government hospitals in Pakistan were similar to those in India.

However, he said, "After seeing the 500-bedded hospital National Institute for Child Health, dedicated only to children, I felt there should be similar effort here. I feel there is a lot to learn from hospitals there and their doctors too can take the best of ours.

"We have already told these hospitals about the gaps in their functioning. They do not have a health accreditation programme. So we will help them as much as possible."