Describing healthcare status as the basic indicator of growth and development of a society, Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah Wednesday said that healthy human resource is vital for comprehensive and all round growth.
“Unless our children are healthy we cannot think of them taking advantage of educational initiatives and developing as capable citizens to lead the country in future. Similar is the case of our work force, farmers and the general population”, he said adding that better medical facilities across the State is essentially important for all sectors to grow and ensure development of a healthy society.
In his inaugural speech at the National Summit on ‘Best Practices and Innovations in Public Healthcare System’ at SKICC here, the Chief Minister said that creation of better infrastructure in the health sector and assuring up to the mark service to people in rural areas is all the more important. He said there are challenges to address this issue in a State like Jammu and Kashmir which presents mosaic of topographical diversities, remoteness of areas and sparse population scattered in mountainous and difficult areas.
The Chief Minister said that launch of National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) has helped in a big way to reach out people in rural areas in healthcare sector. He said that better perks and salaries being offered to doctors and paramedics under NRHM has enhanced the chances of placing qualified medical staff in the rural areas.
Omar Abdullah said that during the militancy the healthcare sector in the State received huge brunt and hospitals were more or less rendered non-functional. “We have rebuilt the system brick by brick and block by block”, he said maintaining that a good quality healthcare facilities are being created all across the State. He said “we are concentrating on putting hospitals to the best uses for the people and provide required equipment, drugs and manpower to these institutions so that these attend to the health needs of people”. He said better hospital facilities in rural areas are also important to reduce pressure on apex and referral hospitals. He said that NHRM has been a blessing to the State in strengthening rural healthcare systems.
Expressing concern on the decline in female sex ratio in the State, the Chief Minister said that this is the area which calls for unified approach by the civil society and government departments together. “If the data collected in this regard is genuinely correct, which we should accept as the correct till it is confronted by more surveys and investigations, we have to gear up at all levels and reverse the unfortunate trend”, he said asserting that the religious leaders, imams of mosques, pujaries in temples, priests in churches, granthies in gurudawaras and heads of other religious places need to sensitize the society about the most dangerous evil of female feticide.
The Chief Minister hoped that the 3-day National Summit in which Mission Directors and medical experts from all over the Country are participating, would prove fruitful for exchanging the expertise and innovations regarding addressing various challenges on account of healthcare requirements and needs in the modern days. “You can learn from each others’ experiences and replicate the feasible modals proven successful in other States resembling each other”, he said.