Jitendra Singh proposes PPP model to supplement healthcare services in north-east

Guwahati (Assam) [India], May 30 : Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh has proposed PPP (Public-Private Participation) model to supplement and extend healthcare services up to district level in the eight states of the North-Eastern Region (NER).

Singh was presiding over a Conclave of Health Ministers from all the eight North-Eastern States in Guwahati today.

The meeting, among others, was also attended by representatives from the premier Adayar Cancer Institute, Chennai, Patanjali and Yog Sansthan Bengaluru.

Giving a resume of the last three years of health related initiatives undertaken by the Ministry of DoNER, Singh disclosed that Dr Barooah Cancer Institute, Guwahati has been affiliated with the Tata Memorial Cancer Centre, Mumbai, since last year under the aegis of Department of Atomic Energy, as a result of which, the faculty and the supplementary teaching cum clinical services will get upgraded.

From last year, he said, super-specialty MCh course in Cancer Surgery has already started and hopefully from this session, super-specialty DM Cancer Medicine will also start.

Singh acknowledged the collaboration from Adayar Cancer Institute, Chennai in imparting a six-month training to one Physician and one Surgeon each from each of the eight North-Eastern States, so that they can go back and offer better healthcare in their respective states, considering the high prevalence of cancer in the region.

Singh said the Ministry of DoNER, with the consensus of all the State Governments, will go forward in inviting the interested private healthcare partners from other parts of the country, so that depending upon their capacity and capability, they may be able to supplement the health services in the region.

"The impetus to healthcare services will be wholesome and holistic, thus also imbibing all the alternative systems of medicine and in this regard, the leading players like Patanjali could have a significant contribution to make," he added.

Referring to a proposal from the Assam Government for setting up a modern Cancer Hospital with the collaboration of the Ministry of DoNER, Singh said, "The officers in the DoNER Ministry are engaged in deliberations with the State Health Secretariat officers to work out its feasibility and viability." In the field of tele-medicine also, Singh said, the Ministry of DoNER will try to facilitate support and help from private sector so that the people living in the remotest areas of the difficult terrain are not deprived of the benefit of specialized medical consultation.

Referring to a suggestion which originated after discussion with the Government of Manipur, Singh said the concept of having "Air Clinics" with helicopter-based outdoor facility has been mooted with both the Ministry of Health as well as the Ministry of Civil Aviation.

If successful, he said, this could be a boon for a large section of population which has no access to health centre or medical clinician.

Singh also disclosed that considering the proactive approach of the DoNER Ministry and the high priority accorded to Northeast by the Central Government, a number of private corporate sector hospital chains are coming forward to venture in the Northeast.

He said, he would seek the help of Ministry of Health and other related Ministries to consider these cases on the principle of mutual benefit.

The meeting was coordinated by Health Minister of Assam Himanta Biswa Sarma and the Health Ministers from the other States also offered their inputs.

It was decided to carry forward this initiative through regular deliberations at the level of the officers of the Ministry of DoNER and those of the Health Departments of the different States as well as the representatives of private sector.

Source: ANI