Health Policy

Health expenditure to be increased to 2.5 pc of GDP

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The Prime Minister has emphasised the need for increased outlay on health sector during 12th Plan so that adequate funds are made available for the sector. He has also stated that though funds for the Health sector will not be a constraint, there is a need to create adequate capacity at the centre and the states to meaningfully absorb the increased outlay. The Planning Commission was requested to allocate adequate resources to achieve the target. As health is primarily a State subject, the outlay of States for health would be critical in achieving this target. The Planning Commission may motivate and incentivise the States to allocate more funds for the health sector. For this purpose the Planning Commission in consultation with the Health Ministry will also work out an appropriate mechanism / scheme for this purpose.

The Health Ministry is working towards the goal of Universal Health Care for all. In the meeting it was decided that the Ministry may specifically focus on two points: Health Ministry has proposed a new initiative called ‘Free medicine for all through Public Health Facilities’ under the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM). The Cabinet has approved the setting up of a Central Procurement Agency for bulk procurement of drugs. Ministry may set up the CPA early and prepare Standard Treatment Protocols. Secondly, strengthening facilities at the Primary Health Centres, Community Health Centres and District Hospital so as to provide a minimum package of care to all citizens through provision of cashless, hassle free outpatient, inpatient and diagnostic care and supply of essential medicines. Ambulance services will be strengthened to provide access to health services to far off and inaccessible areas.

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