16 Dec 2013

Ambulances Provided Under NRHM

Ghulam Nabi Azad, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare
There has been a constant endeavour on part of Union and State Governments to meet health care needs of population in an affordable manner. 

This gained momentum with the launch of National Rural Health Mission in 2005 and further with setting up of National Health Mission (NHM) in 12th Plan which aims to achieve the vision of “Attainment of Universal Access to Equitable, Affordable & Quality Health Care Services, Accountable & Responsive to People’s needs with Effective IntersectoralConvergent action to address the wider social determinants of health” and provides the mechanism for achieving the long term goal of Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

Presently, the Government of India supports States for various free services such as immunization, family planning services, maternal and child healthcare services including those under Janani Shishu SurakshaKaryakram, screening of  children up to eighteen years for Diseases, Deficiency, Defects and Developmental Delays including Disability and medical follow up including treatment upto tertiary level under RashtriyaBal Swasthya Karyakram, adolescent health services, emergency patient transport and referral services, free diagnosis and treatment for communicable diseases like TB, Leprosy and Vector Borne diseases like Malaria, and HIV/AIDS.

The Government is also implementing the Rashtriya Swasthya BimaYojana (RSBY) to provide health insurance cover upto Rs. 30,000 for upto 5 members of a family belonging of BPL or certain other specified vulnerable groups. The states have also been requested to undertake Universal Health Coverage (UHC) pilot in one district of the state under the National Health Mission (NHM).
The National Advisory Council (NAC) has recently submitted its recommendations to the Government regarding universal health cover to all citizens of the country. The details are available at www.nac.nic.in/communication.htm.

The broad areas of NAC recommendations are summarised as under:

           (i)    Financing for Universal Health Coverage (UHC)
           (ii)  Regulation and Legislation for UHC
       (iii) Community action for UHC
(iv)   Urban Health
           (v)  Roll out plan for UHC
Regarding the action on these pints, the HFW Ministry, in light of limited fund availability, states have been requested to undertake UHC pilot in one district of the state under the NHM. Some of the key actions taken inter alia include issue of guidelines and provision of funds for implementation of the National Urban Health Mission (NUHM), creation of  separate flexible pools for Communicable Diseases and Non-Communicable Diseases including injury and trauma to ensure  greater flexibility inter se between various Disease Control Programmes and other programmes, requesting states to undertake activity mapping for devolution of transfer of fund, functions and functionaries to Panchayati Raj Institutions, Certification of ASHAs to enhance competency and professional credibility etc.

This was stated by Sh Ghulam Nabi Azad, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha today.

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