Budget

Nadda ‘grateful’ for health outlay

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Ministry set to get substantial funds

With the health allocation getting a boost in the Union Budget-2018, Health Minister Jagat Prakash Nadda took to twitter to post his “gratefulness” for the significant increase of 11.5%.

The Ministry’s budget, which was ₹47352.51 crore during 2017-2018, has now been increased to ₹52,800 crore.

K. Sujatha Rao, former Union Secretary of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, tweeted: “Excellent initiative in the recent budget for health for the poor. Kudos to the government ... extremely excited that the drought facing health may be over.’’

This when Keshav Desiraju, also former Union Secretary of the Health and Family Welfare Ministry noted that there was a need to look at the details.

“But surely this vast outlay could have been used to strengthen the public health system and improve government medical and nursing colleges? Employ more people, pay better salaries? Why transfer funds to private hospitals?’’ he tweeted.

Doctors have also welcomed the government’s promise of comprehensive health care through 1.5 lakh Health and Wellness Centres and a 5 lakh per family coverage to 10 crore families for hospitalised advanced care.

Dr. K. Srinath Reddy, president, Public Health Foundation of India said: “The budget of 2018 imbibes the spirit of the National Health Policy of 2017, in initiating the country’s journey towards universal health coverage.

“However implementation challenges lie in expanding the size and skills of the workforce needed for primary health care and in creating state capacity to efficiently manage strategic purchasing of secondary and tertiary care,” he said.

‘Heartening move’

“The Union Budget 2018 has taken a huge step in making healthcare affordable and accessible by launching the world’s largest healthcare scheme. It is indeed heartening that 40 per cent of India’s population will be covered under an insurance scheme,’’ said Suneeta Reddy, MD, Apollo Hospitals.

Bhavdeep Singh, CEO, Fortis Healthcare said: “We welcome the Hon’ble Finance Minister’s announcement that 24 new government medical colleges and hospitals will be set up by upgrading existing district hospitals.”

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Printable version | Jan 21, 2020 11:37:56 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/budget/nadda-grateful-for-health-outlay/article22625433.ece

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