Budget 2020: A holistic vision of healthcare

Budget 2020: A holistic vision of healthcare

Representative image. (Getty images)

By K K Aggarwal

Among the huge expectations surrounding the Union Budget 2020, there have been some good measures taken by the government. The finance ministry has proposed INR Rs 8,000 crore outlay over 5 years for the National Mission of Quantum Technology and Application. The allocation of INR Rs 69,000 crore for the health sector comes at a time when emphasis on this segment is pertinent. With a holistic vision of healthcare, Mission Indradhanush has been extended to cover new diseases and vaccines. This is a good move considering the rise in the prevalence of non-communicable diseases and new epidemics. The PPP mode hospitals to be set up in 112 aspirational districts is also a welcome step. Access to quality and affordable healthcare is the need of the hour and expansion of the Jan Aushadhi Kendras in all districts of the country will help achieve this.

The government also aims to strengthen the TB Harega, Desh Jeetega campaign to end the prevalence of the condition by 2025. Air, water, and sanitation are three issues that need immediate attention in the country. We are happy to see that allocation towards all three has been adequate and that the provision of clean air is one of the primary motives of the government.

 There is a shortage of qualified medical doctors both general practitioners and specialists; it is proposed to attach a medical college to a district hospital in PPP mode. This is also a positive budget for the medical devices industry. The imports of medical devices will be taxed to fund capacity building in healthcare delivery. This will have the twin advantage of accelerating the manufacturing of medical devices and addressing national healthcare security concerns.

(K K Aggarwal, President Heart Care Foundation of India (HCFI), Editor-in-Chief IJCP Group and Medtalks.in)



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