Staff Correspondent

‘Smriti Din' of late T.M.A. Pai, T.A. Pai held

Udupi: Pro-Chancellor of Manipal University H.S. Ballal said on Saturday that prevention and early detection and treatment of diseases should be given priority in the country.

He was speaking at a seminar on “Health for all”, organised by the Bharatiya Vikas Trust (BVT), Academy of General Education and Department of Health and Family Welfare, on the occasion of the “Smriti Din” of late T.M.A. Pai and late T.A. Pai, here.

Prof. Ballal said that nearly 80 per cent of funds was being spent on treatment of diseases rather than prevention in the country. The problem with the provision of healthcare was that 70 per cent of the people lived in rural areas, where only about 25 per cent of health facilities were being provided.

Water borne diseases could be prevented by providing protected water, proper sanitation facilities and vaccination.

Lack of toilets in schools was one of the reasons for high dropout rate. As a result, the gross enrolment ratio in higher education was low, he said.

There was always a complaint that doctors did not want to serve in rural areas. Lack of good schools and other infrastructure facilities were responsible for doctors not opting to serve in rural areas. The Government should make one year's service in rural areas compulsory for doctors before taking up their postgraduate studies.

Early detection of diseases also helped save a lot of money for the people. There was no dearth of sophisticated equipment to detect various illnesses now. People should make use of these facilities rather than approaching hospitals for every disease, Prof. Ballal said.

People living below the poverty line should opt for health insurance. The Manipal University and Sri Kshetra Dharmasthala were providing health insurance coverage to poor families, he said.

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District Health and Family Welfare Officer Ramachandra Bairy, in-charge of the Department of Public Health at Manipal University Ramachandra Kamath and General Manager of Syndicate Bank J.C. Mishra were among those present.

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