DW BUREAU / Chandigarh
Punjab Health and Family Welfare Minister Brahm Mohindra showered high praise on the state government for giving top priority to the health sector by earmarking Rs 4015 crore for the upgradation of health care services in the state.
In a communique, the Minister said that the substantial 13 per cent hike in the health budget truly manifested the firm resolve of the state government to provide the quality and affordable health services to the citizens of Punjab. He appreciated Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal for presenting pro-poor, pro-farmer progressive budget 2018-19.
He said that with the enhanced outlay for the health sector now the prime duty of the health department would be to prompt the accessibility of health care services in the government hospitals. “True to the progressive vision of Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh special budgetary allocation has been made for the poor and the downtrodden.” He said Mr Manpreet Singh Badal has earned all the praise for striking a balance in the budget by making budgetary provisions for all the sectors. He said that Capt Amarinder Singh led Congress government is committed to restore pristine glory of health and medical education departments by providing equitable, accessible and affordable quality health services to its entire population particularly the underserved. The government is allocating an outlay of Rs 4015 crore during 2018-19 an increase of 13 per cent over previous year budget estimates. Giving details about the National Health Mission, he said that under the flagship programme of NHM, the proposed allocation is also 18 per cent higher as compare to the last year’s allocation of Rs 776.63 crore. He said that Rs 914.57 crore is proposed during 2018-19 for upgradation of health infrastructure, provisioning of equipments, diagnostics and free drugs for the patients.
The Minister said that undoubtedly it is the beginning of golden era of medical education and research as the Punjab government has decided to set up two more medical colleges, apart from one medical college at SAS Nagar. He also said that a total of Rs 73.34 crore is being earmarked in the budget for the upgradation of Government Medical College Patiala and Government Medical College, Amritsar. “We also propose to upgrade the Government Medical College, Faridkot and Advance Cancer Hospital Bathinda and for this purpose a sum of Rs.10 crore has been earmarked,” he added.