India has accelerated many initiatives to achieve universal health coverage: J P Nadda
“India has fast-tracked many initiatives aimed at achieving all the core tenets of Universal Health Coverage i.e, strengthening health systems, improving access to free medicines & diagnostics and reducing catastrophic healthcare spending.” This was stated by Shri J P Nadda, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare at the inauguration of the ‘71st Session of the WHO Regional Committee for South-East Asia.
Shri J P Nadda further stated that India on its part firmly believes in the objective of attainment of the highest possible level of health, where health is a state of complete physical, mental, spiritual and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
Ministers of Health from the countries of the WHO South East Asia Region (SEAR), Shri Amitabh Kant, CEO of NITI Aayog, SmtPreeti Sudan, Secretary (Health), Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director, WHO South-East Asia Region andMs Jane Allison, DDG, WHO were also present at the inaugural session.
Highlighting the initiatives of the Government, Shri Nadda said that although the WHO has fixed 2030 as the timeline for elimination of Tuberculosis, our Prime Minister has exhorted us to do it five years ahead of target in 2025.
“In line with this ambitious plan, India is on track for the implementation of the National Strategic Plan for Tuberculosis and we have recently introduced supplementary nutritional support for the complete duration of treatment for patients,” he added.
Shri Nadda further stated that India has already initiated universal screening for prevention and management of five common NCDs including hypertension, diabetes and three common Cancers of oral cavity, breast and cervix at pan India level.
He also informed that the Health Ministry has started a unique initiative called AMRIT Deendayal, an acronym for 'Affordable Medicines & Reliable Implants for Treatment' - Centres that provide medicines for cancer & cardiovascular diseases and cardiac implants at significantly reduced prices.
“India supports the Regional and Global health agenda andstands ready to work with fellow member states and the international community to achieve our common goal of Health for All,” he emphasized.
Also present at the event were Ambassadors and High Commissioners from the member countries, senior officers of the Ministry and representatives and delegates from across the globe.