7th annual summit of NATHEALTH

Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Dr Harsh Vardhan, addressed the 7th annual summit of NATHEALTH in virtual mode on March 26, 2021. The summit focused on ‘Indian Health system expansion in post-COVID era’.

Highlights

While addressing the summit the minister reiterated the commitments of government for fulfilling goal of Health for all. He noted that, “Health for All” is a top priority for current Government and to institutionalize the approach towards this goal, government has launched the “National Health Policy” in 2017. The primary vision of policy-framework is to attain highest possible level of health and well-being for all irrespective of all age groups. To attain this vision, the policy emphasizes on preventive & promotive aspects of health and providing universal access to good quality healthcare services. Government also launched Ayushman Bharat program with the objective of providing Universal Free Access to primary health care, promoting health and wellbeing.

Union Budget 2021-22

Union Budget 2021-22 also identifies Health as one of the six main pillars to drive growth. So, it has adopted a holistic approach towards health and wellbeing with a financial allocation of Rs 2,23,846 crore in 2021-22. It accounts for an increase by 137% over 2020-2021. To achieve the objectives of policy, government is working towards increasing health expenditure by 2.5 % of GDP 2025. Government is also encouraging State Governments to increase State sector health spending to 8% of State’s GDP.

Pradhan Mantri Atma Nirbhar Swasthya Yojana

This scheme was launched with the aim of strengthening health systems to meet challenges of covid-19 pandemic and future pandemics. It also seeks to strengthen the expanding & building robust IT enabled surveillance systems in order to track and contain spread of diseases. Several components of the scheme include training & mentoring, Critical Care Blocks for advanced treatment, establishing new Regional Centres for Disease Control and strengthening the network of public health labs. These components cater to the needs for emergency response.

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