President Pranab Mukherjee said on Monday that India’s health coverage strategy must look beyond medical cure and intervention to promote preventive healthcare.
“Preventive healthcare has to assume importance due to the increasing trend of lifestyle diseases,” he said after inaugurating a new building of the JSS Hospital in the city.
“Many people depend on the private sector for health services. They often fail to shoulder the burden of expensive medical treatment and plunge into poverty. People require the means to access speciality medical treatment and stand denied due to high costs,” he said.
There are areas of concern in the health sector despite efforts by the State government.
Greater intervention is required in the country to give people a world class healthcare system.
He said there is a need to increase spending in the health sector. Public expenditure on health in India is 1.2 per cent of GDP which is much lower than the 4 per cent plus levels in countries like the US, Australia, Norway, Brazil and the UK.
Technology has to be harnessed in healthcare to increase access to quality medical treatment. The telemedicine project which uses satellite technology, has connected remote health centres with super speciality hospitals in urban areas.
This has helped expert healthcare consultation to reach the needy and under-served people. Other innovative uses of technology have to be explored.
The medical fraternity has to respect the good faith and trust that people have bestowed on them. Doctors have to remember always the true meaning of the Hippocratic oath that they took on entering this noble profession, the President said.