Govt to upgrade village health centres into wellness clinics
New Delhi: In a move aimed at strengthening healthcare system in rural areas, the government has decided to 'upgrade' all sub-centres into wellness clinics which would be equipped with all the needed facilities to treat and screen patients suffering from common diseases.
The Health Ministry would spend above Rs 500 crore on the upgradation of sub-centres, which are popularly known as Jacha Bacha Kendra. The ministry has sought a similar allocation from Finance Ministry.
Notably, the sub-centres were established with the objective to provide primary healthcare facilities to pregnant women, mothers, etc and create awareness among masses about different schemes being run by the government.
Given that there are over 1.56 lakh sub-centres in the country, strengthening the infrastructure of all such village sub-centres would definitely help in addressing common ailments and screening of hypertension, diabetes, cancers, etc, a senior official said.
The sub-centres are the building blocks of our healthcare system in rural areas as one sub-centre caters to the healthcare needs of 5,000 population in plain areas and 3,000 population in hilly, tribal and backward areas.
As per the upgradation plan, the government is planning to provide common diagnostic facilities at the sub-centres so that screening of common diseases such as diabetics, tuberculosis, cancer could be done at the upgraded centres only.
Hailing the move, Manish Nigam, the general secretary of Federation of Resident Doctors Association (FoRDA), said, "It's a good move of the government. It would be government's first positive initiative in the direction of health for all, which we have been demanding for several years. The decision would definitely help poor patients."
"The government must ensure the availability of a qualified doctor so that patients get the treatment as per medical protocols. It's a fact that about 80 per cent ailments are common and can be screened and managed at the primary level. The move would help in making a healthy India," Nigam said.
As per latest report, there were 1,56,231 sub centres (SCs), 25,650 primary health centres (PHCs) and 5,624 community health centres (CHCs) functioning in the country.