New Delhi, Feb 1 (IANS) Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare Harsh Vardhan, here on Saturday, hailed the increase in the budget allocation for the health sector and said it focused on holistic health, medical infrastructure and medical education.

Terming the budget as pragmatic, visionary, holistic and people-centric, the Minister said, “It aims to build three prominent and fundamental pillars of an aspirational India to raise the standard of living.”

Calling the budget inclusive, pro-poor, pro-farmer, pro-downtrodden and for the development of all the sectors, he said, “It will lay foundations for fulfilling the Prime Minister’s vision of a new India.”

Praising Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, he said, “The budget estimates for the Department Of Health and Family Welfare show an increase of 3.75 per cent, while there has been 10 per cent hike in the allocation for health research.”

Stating that the budget has positioned health as a prime mover in the country’s journey of development and growth, Harsh Vardhan said the health sector had been allocated Rs 69,000 crore.

The Minister said the budget focused on medical infrastructure, human resources and holistic health & wellness.

As part of strengthening the medical infrastructure, the government will support creation of hospitals in the two and three tier cities, which don’t have empanelled hospitals under the Ayushman Bharat PMJAY. This shall be under the PPP mode with a viability gap funding support.

Also, to address the shortage of qualified doctors, Sitharaman has proposed to attach a medical college with existing district hospitals in the PPP mode.

The states that would allow the linking and provide land at concession would receive the viability gap funding from the Centre, he added.

—IANS

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