Smart health facilities in villages on the anvil | lucknow | Hindustan Times
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Smart health facilities in villages on the anvil

The union ministry’s VHWC scheme, which is on the anvil, aims to turn 2% of all the health sub-centres in rural areas into smart health facilities. Nurses here will be given six months’ training to perform some of the work that doctors do, like examining a patient and initiating early treatment.

lucknow Updated: Jun 30, 2017 16:03 IST
Gaurav Saigal
Village health and wellness centres (VHWC) will revamp health facilities in rural pockets of the country.
Village health and wellness centres (VHWC) will revamp health facilities in rural pockets of the country.

The low quality, understaffed and under-equipped medical services in villages are poised to undergo a sea change.

Soon,Village health and wellness centres (VHWC) will revamp health facilities in rural pockets of the country, especially for women and the elderly.

Priorities for Uttar Pradesh
  • Bring down infant mortality rate by 10% in 3 years
  • Maternal mortality is 270 per lakh in UP which needs to come to at least 160 (national average)
  • Diarrhoea needs to be controlled
  • The figure for complete immunisation has to go up to 80%
  • ORS use is 40% which needs to be raised to 80%

The union ministry’s VHWC scheme, which is on the anvil, aims to turn 2% of all the health sub-centres in rural areas into smart health facilities. Nurses here will be given six months’ training to perform some of the work that doctors do, like examining a patient and initiating early treatment.

“This will improve health care in rural areas and people will no longer be compelled to run to district hospitals for minor ailments such as fever or injury in road accident,” said Prof MK Bhan, national science professor in Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi, who was in the city as an expert at a seminar ‘Public Health in UP: Challenge and solution’ on Thursday.

He said 2% of all the health sub-centres in villages in the country would be turned into VHWC. Such sub-centres are already in villages on every 5,000 population. These centres will have two auxiliary nurses/ midwives, one of whom will have specialized training in family planning while the other will have exclusive training in managing early treatment.

“No country or state can deliver services instantly. But with such initiatives, I hope things will change for the better and villagers will not be required to run kilometres for small ailments,” said Prof Bhan.

Listing out the priorities for the Uttar Pradesh government in the health sector, Prof Bhan said under- five mortality, infant mortality and mother mortality were three areas that needed extreme focus and the government needed to work on an agenda that deliver results of 10 years in just 5 years.

“There is a major backlog in Uttar Pradesh and this can be overcome only if the speed of development is accelerated so that results of 10 years are visible in 5 years only. Though work has been done, without this pace of development results will not be satisfactory,” said Prof Bhan.

Sharing statistics, he said 25% of adults were malnourished, ORS use was 40% which needed to be raised to 80% among those who needed it and complete immunisation was 51% which needed to come up to 80%. “Infant mortality has come down by 10% in UP in 10 years but this has to repeated and another 10% reduction has to come in 3 years, to make effective changes in the state,” he said.