For the upcoming budget, I would like to seek increased allotment of funds to the healthcare sector to improve its availability to all citizens. Also, healthcare organisations/hospitals treating Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) patients must get benefits in terms of subsidy in electricity bill, biomedical waste bill, water bill etc. Further, hospitals treating PMJAY super-specialities like cancer etc. must get benefits in terms of discount in import duty for importing high tech medical treatment equipment. The Ayushman Bharat – Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (ABPMJAY) scheme to be made applicable for people with income up to 12 lakhs per annum. Also, PMJAY scheme to become the single most scheme and all other schemes like CGHS, ESI, ECHS, SC/ST, school education etc. to be merged in the same. In continuation, package charges of PMJAY to be given to private hospitals must be hiked by at least 10% across.
I believe that the Jan Aaushdi scheme of PM, to be revived at present, is not effective at all and needs more funds. Looking ahead, higher and newer molecules in cancer treatment and transplant to be made accessible to common man at affordable rates. Additionally, high end treatments like liver transplant, heart transplant and bone marrow transplant to be included in PMJAY cluster for reaching out to BPL category. And finally, infrastructure wise every district to get a medical college. Hospital bed strength of 200 beds and above multispecialty should be made eligible to become teaching hospital.
Views expressed by Col Dr Sunil Rao, CEO, Gujarat Cancer Society