New Delhi: Preventive and affordable healthcare with a supply side intervention were the focus of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi's keynote address at News18's Rising India Summit on Friday.
He said, “So far, the Union Health Ministry had been working alone and came up with no solutions to better healthcare in India.” However, no silos, only solutions, has been his government's way forward, PM Modi said.
Preventive healthcare, said the PM, is the best and the most affordable healthcare for people. “To achieve the idea of ‘swachchta’ has become a people's movement and has entered every household. People now know that filth brings disease and cleanliness fights them,” PM Modi said.
He added that in 2014, there were only 13 crore toilets and sanitation coverage was only 38 percent. Now, he said, 13 crore households have toilets, and the sanitation coverage is more than 80%. India's progress in this sector has doubled.
The country's immunisation coverage earlier was only 1 percent annually and now it has increased to 6.7 percent.
To make healthcare affordable, the PM added, there are now over 3,000 Jan Aushadhi centres, where cheaper versions of over 800 medicines are available. The slash in stent prices and knee implants, that took place in 2017, were also brought up as an achievement of his government.
“The Ayush Ministry is responsible for making Yoga a mass movement. The global awareness about Yoga is also part of Rising India,” said the PM, adding, “It will lead us to ‘Ayushman Vishva’, not just ‘Ayushman Bharat’.
Ayushman Bharat, announced in the 2018 Budget also featured in the PM's address. “Ten crore families will be given an annual insurance cover of Rs 5 lakh by the government and insurance companies,” he said, touching upon the mega health cover announcement made by FM Arun Jaitley in his Budget speech earlier.
On March 13, at the global End TB Summit in New Delhi, the PM had reiterated his 2017 promise of eliminating tuberculosis from India by 2025, five years ahead of the global target of 2030. He brought this up this on Friday and said that he was sure India will show this result to the world in 2025.
He further added that not much was possible without a supply side intervention, which is why his government had bumped up seats in medical colleges to 80,000 for undergraduates and 46,000 for postgraduates and a medical college for every third Parliamentary constituencies.
The government's mission mode approach can be seen in the national nutrition mission kicked off on International Women's Day, which is the newest and most important intervention for maternal and child health, said the PM.