New Delhi: “Health is the ultimate wealth,” said Union Health Minister Dr Mansukh Mandaviya, while addressing the 76th session of the World Health Organization Regional Committee for South-East Asia on October 30. Dr Mandaviya said that the country is following a holistic and inclusive approach towards strengthening the healthcare system.
Extended a warm welcome to all ministers of member countries in 76th session of @WHO Regional Committee for SEARO.
Highlighted India's efforts towards achieving the goal of UHC following a holistic & inclusive approach.
India is reaching the last mile with the help of AB-HWCs. pic.twitter.com/J8axQrw2DI
— Dr Mansukh Mandaviya (@mansukhmandviya) October 30, 2023
Here are the highlights of what Dr Mandaviya said on the World Health Organization Regional Committee for South-East Asia:
- India is following a holistic and inclusive approach to enhance the healthcare sector, from expanding health infrastructure to promoting traditional systems of medicine and integrating with modern systems of medicine.
- The country is making affordable healthcare accessible to all in alignment with the vision of Universal Health Coverage and its resolute commitment to leaving no one behind.
- The Ayushman Bharat Health and Wellness Centres (AB-HWC) in India have provided a comprehensive array of primary healthcare services to people residing in the remote area.
- Up till October 24, 2023, more than 211 crore people have benefited from these wellness centres. Individuals have availed of free drugs over 183 crore times and diagnostic services over 87.3 crore times.
- Around 2.6 crore wellness sessions have been conducted across the country, engaging more than 30.6 crore people.
- The Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission and the PM-Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission (PM-ABHIM) have strengthened the digital health framework and infrastructure and enhanced healthcare delivery in the nation.
The session was also joined by Union Health Secretary Sudhansh Pant, who spoke about the establishment of the South-East Asia Regional Forum for Primary Health Care (PHC)-oriented Health Systems and its significance in addressing the challenges of PHC.
Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), had also joined the session, wherein he lauded the efforts of the Union Health Ministry for its commitment towards combating non-communicable diseases and achieving the goal of ‘Health for All’. Dr Tedros said that seven of the 11 member countries of the Southeast Asia region, including India, have successfully eliminated at least one of the neglected tropical diseases.
Dr. Poonam Kethrapal, Regional Director of the WHO South-East Asia Region, commended India’s achievement in operationalising more than 1,50,000 Ayushman Bharat Health and Wellness Centres (AB-HWCs).
NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – theLGBTQ population,indigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the currentCOVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water,SanitationandHygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fightmalnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health,adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues likeair pollution,waste management,plastic ban,manual scavengingand sanitation workers andmenstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India wheretoilets are used andopen defecation free (ODF)status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched byPrime Minister Narendra Modiin 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.