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Updated: February 10, 2013 00:39 IST

Binayak pitches for universal healthcare

Special Correspondent
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Alleges efforts are on to convert the universal healthcare system into 'UHC Private Ltd'

Human rights and public health activist Binayak Sen has demanded that the government put in place a tax-based universal healthcare mechanism to reach out healthcare to all sections of society.

Appropriate care should be taken to ensure that there are no restrictions like ability to pay in the proposed system.

“Universalisation with a social aspect should form the core of the system as everyone needs effective medicare,” he said.

Dr. Sen was participating in a meeting on public health organised by Anveshi, research centre for women’s studies, here on Saturday. He said efforts should also be put in place to eliminate the problem of malnutrition that was the root cause of health issues.

Public health activist Abhay Shukla, who made a presentation on the status of the healthcare system in the country, said there were different views on universalisation of healthcare doing rounds among stakeholders. The Government should make it sure to strengthen the public sector systems that had a social motive rather than profit orientation.

‘UPA pursuing quick-fixes’

He suspected that the Congress-led UPA-II was in the process of evolving a ‘quick-fix’ solution, a populist measure on the lines of Arogyasri to go for the next election.

“Arogyasri has been a populist scheme that can prove a good shortcut to the government with some additional allocation of funds,” he said.

“Efforts are on to convert the universal healthcare system into UHC Private Ltd,” he charged.

Arogyasri Trust CEO Srikanth explained about the difficulties being faced in universalisation of health schemes including that of finances.

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