IMA for including health care in concurrent subject list

  • PTI, None, Phagwara
  • Updated: Mar 01, 2015 15:01 IST

Indian Medical Association has demanded that Health should be included in the Concurrent subject list of the Constitution for ensuring right to health care, on the lines of right to education, with major focus on primary and rural health care.

Besides, the body also demanded a hike in expenditure on health services from 1.4 per cent of GDP to 3 per cent, raising it to 5 per cent in two years.

These demands/suggestions were made in a uniformly-worded IMA memorandum to be given countrywide to MPs by different units of the IMA, Dr SPS Sooch, President of the Punjab state branch of IMA.

The memorandum was in response to the draft of New National Health Policy-2015 of Union Health ministry, he said.

The new policy, with "Health In All" slogan, was drafted after 13 years and IMA appreciated this step, Sooch said.

However, he regretted the reduction of Health budget in the Union Budget presented yesterday.

"Health budget was lowered first from Rs 37,000 crore to Rs 35,000 crore and now to Rs 33,000 crore," said Sooch, regretting that governments' new health policy and the budget moved in opposite directions.

On six new AIMS declared in the budget, Sooch argued that there was no need of AIMS as these served only corporate and super-rich sector while the poor required primary health care.

The IMA also demanded categorisation of health care into internationally acclaimed three parts -- Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary with the major thrust on primary health care.

To promote rural health care, it demanded incentive for rural doctors in form of higher salaries and more marks for PG admission after their five years of service.

It also said that medical education must be oriented to primary and rural health care by creating department of family medicine, he said.

The memorandum also mooted a health cess for raising a medical fund for helping poor and lower middle classes.

Since 70-75 per cent health care was provided by private hospitals, they should be empanelled both in rural and urban areas, the IMA demanded.

For curbing mushrooming of medical colleges in a few states and cities, NOCs should be given only to rural-oriented medical colleges, it said.

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