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Diplomat of the day Gender Equality Health

German federal president awards ‘Order of Merit’ to Dr Chris Schmotzer

By Shabbir Hussain

ISLAMABAD, Thursday, December 17, 2020 (WNP/DL): The German federal president Thursday awarded ‘Order of Merit’ to Dr Chris Schmotzer, medical doctor and director of the Leprosy Hospital in Rawalpindi, for her tireless service to humanity.

German Ambassador to Pakistan Bernhard Schlagheck bestowed the Cross of Merit on the ‘German sister’ – as Dr Chris Schmotzer is called by her Pakistani patients, in a ceremony here at embassy.

The honour ‘ Order of Merit’ is the highest tribute the Federal Republic of Germany can pay to individuals for their outstanding services.

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Health Dr Faisal Sultan, who also attended the ceremony, commended the work of Dr Schmotzer and her team.

As director of the Rawalpindi Leprosy Hospital, Dr Chris Schmotzer has been serving the Pakistani people for 33 years now, offering treatment to patients with leprosy, tuberculosis, eye and skin diseases as well as rehabilitation measures.

Being member of the German Protestant Sisterhood of Christ-Bearers, she decided to come to Pakistan shortly after finishing her medicine studies in 1988.

Since then, she has contributed to fight leprosy and tuberculosis in Pakistan. She also closely collaborated with Dr. Ruth Pfau and the Marie Adelaide Leprosy Centre in Karachi.

During the awarding ceremony, Ambassador Bernhard Schlagheck underlined, “Dr Chris Schmotzer is a role model of true philanthropy! Thirty-three years ago, as a young woman, she decided to devote her life to the service of humanity. In Rawalpindi and beyond, she is widely known and respected as a compassionate and devoted medical doctor, who always gives priority to the treatment of sick and needy people. As a token of appreciation of the German Federal President for her tireless work, I gladly hand over the Cross of Merit to Dr Chris Schmotzer.”

It may be mentioned that the Order of Merit, instituted in 1951, is awarded to German and foreign citizens for achievements in the political, economic, social or intellectual realm and for all kinds of outstanding services to the nation in the field of social, charitable or philanthropic work. The award is not associated with any financial allowance.

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