Newly appointed Union health minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan has said that health of the people of this country is the top priority of the Modi government.
He said the government will focus on strengthening promotive and preventive strategies so that people adopt positive and healthy lifestyles and remain healthy.
After taking charge as Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare on Monday, Dr. Harsh Vardhan stressed on the need of making health a ‘Jan Andolan’ through people’s involvement.
He further added that India has the potential and capacity for fulfilling the goal of ‘Health for All’.
He cycled to Nirman Bhawan to take charge and ascribed the act to his ‘green good deed’ for the day.
Speaking on Ayushman Bharat, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that “we will consider expanding eligibility criteria to include those poor and vulnerable people who have been left out from the current list of PMJAY”.
He stated that concerted efforts will be made for empanelling more private hospitals. Also, that the government will resolve the bottlenecks in the implementation of Ayushman Bharat and make it more handy and easily accessible for the common man.
“We will make Ayushman Bharat-PMJAY and Health and Wellness Centres (HWCs) into a people’s movement. More than 18,000 HWCs have become functional. The government will take up the programme to next level with expanded package of services, availability of drugs and point of care diagnostics and tele-medicine facility. The focus will be on consolidating both the streams of Ayushman Bharat,” he added.
Dr. Harsh Vardhan also laid emphasis on elimination of TB from India by 2025 and said that the government will also take concerted and time-bound actions to eliminate Leprosy and Kala Azar.
As per minister, the government will create a roadmap for essential devices list and a separate policy for medical devices focusing on their accessibility and affordability to masses.
“We are committed to leveraging all resources efficiently to ensure that the out-of-pocket expenditure on health is reduced and all citizens can avail of necessary medical services,” he elaborated.
The minister stated that the government will strengthen the medical education reforms by taking up pending bills like re-organisation of MCI, etc. “The government will use Mission Indradhanush approaches as part of UIP to ensure full immunization coverage and save all the children and pregnant women from vaccine preventable diseases by 2022,” he said.
Dr Vardhan suggested for creating a common working group comprising health ministry and the Department of Science & Technology for research and innovation in the health sector by converging the resources and potential of both the Ministries.
Ashwini Choubey today took charge as Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare. He took Metro to reach Nirman Bhawan.
He too emphasized on the need to make Ayushman Bharat scheme accessible up to the last mile.