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The Board of Governors (BoG) of the University of Health Sciences (UHS), on Monday, approved a Rs 1634 million budget for the financial year 2021-22. More than 14 per cent of the total budget will be spent on research.

The 47th meeting of the UHS board was chaired by former Chief Justice of Pakistan, Justice (retired) Tassaduq Hussain Jillani. Other members who were present included UHS VC Prof Javed Akram, Gohar Ejaz, Pro-Vice-Chancellor Prof Maroof Aziz, Registrar Dr Asad Zaheer and representatives of provincial health and finance departments whereas Professor Salima Hashmi, Andleeb Abbas and Professor Anwar A Khan participated through video link. UHS Treasurer Baquee Bin Hanif presented the budget.

According to the budget estimates, Rs 1069 million has been earmarked for the city campus whereas Rs 565 million is reserved for Jinnah Campus, Kala Shah Kaku.

An amount of Rs 331.60 million has been reserved for employee-related expenses. On research, the university will spend Rs 150 million whereas Rs 32.20 million has been allocated for grant of scholarships and stipends. A sum of Rs.17.10 million has been allocated for the purchase of I.T. equipment.

UHS will spend Rs 144.50 million on the conduct of examinations during the year 2021-22 whereas Rs 4.00 million has been allocated for the conduct of MD, MS and MDS workshops. The board also approved a 10 per cent increase in the salaries of UHS employees as an ad-hoc relief allowance announced earlier by the government. A policy framework for the capacity building of UHS regional centres at affiliated colleges was also approved.

The Education Testing Council (ETC) has announced to hold Undergraduate Studies Aptitude Test (USAT), a standardised test for admission at the undergraduate level in universities all over Pakistan, tentatively on September 12, 2021.

 The last date for online registration is August 30, 2021. The students who have passed the Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSSC) or equivalent/Grade 12 education and those who have appeared in the final examination and are awaiting results can apply for the test by registering through http://etic.hec.gov.pk.

The USAT test is a competitive product that intends to carve out its own niche based on quality tests. It is developed from a standardised question bank with quality, equity, reliability, and validity of the product as well as integrity of the processes involved ensured at all levels of development, administration, grading and result reporting. Its validity will hold for a year. Being a universal test gauging the ability of a student, it can be used by all universities if they so desire.

The test is however not intended for the candidates applying for MBBS/BDS programmes.

The universities may freely choose to accept USAT result card as valid for their respective admissions by announcing it for their prospective undergraduate candidates.