Private entities must work alongside government bodies to enhance Healthcare system in the country, said Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu in New Delhi on Wednesday.

Speaking during the inauguration of Rainbow Children’s Hospital, the Vice President lauded the efforts of Dr Ramesh Kancharla, the brains behind the New Delhi facility. The Vice President called for more experts from private sectors to come forward to offer high-end facilities to India, which is daunted by several healthcare challenges.

The Vice President pointed out that while creating solutions, it should be made both affordable and accessible by the masses.

Highlighting the need for better medical facilities for children in the country, Vice President Naidu pointed out that a happy child is one who is well fed and well nourished, and India must take care of its young citizens.

Childhood is an important part of life. Emotional wellbeing is vital when growing up, he said.

Healthcare challenges

India is suffering from dearth of decent healthcare facilities. More people are going to the West for treatment.

Vice President Naidu said that infant and child health is one of the primary healthcare challenges faced in the country. Citing a recent global study by United Nations Children's Fund, the Vice President pointed out that as per the report, nearly 43% of children (aged five or below) are malnourished. This is visibly evident in low- and middle-income countries. The UNICEF study also shows that every year, more than 10 lakh kids aged five or below die because of health-related issues.

Vice President Naidu pointed out that the primary causes of child mortality in the country are premature births.

This is foolowed by low birth weight and other diseases like pneumonia and diarrhoea.

“It is a daunting task for a country like India to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030," Naidu said.

Naidu added that the Indian government has initiated several measures to improve healthcare facilities. "The government is taking steps to improve health indicators as well," he added.

Calling for a multi-pronged approach, the Vice President added that while taking steps to improve maternal and child health, the government must also encourage and improve institutional deliveries. Steps must be taken to improve the state of curative and preventive facilities in the country, he said.

Upgrade the system, says Naidu

Naidu added that the government must take measures to qualitatively upgrade the public health system.

Emphasizing the need to set up more healthcare facilities in rural areas, the Vice President called for a private-public partnership. He explained that a large portion of Indians are poor and cannot afford expensive treatments.

They must be provided medical insurance, he said.

He added that some states are already implementing health insurance schemes. “The National Health Protection Scheme can make a huge difference to the poor and needy, and will have an impact on both their physical well being and economic prosperity,” Naidu said.

A disease-free World

Quoting the ancient vedas, the Vice President said that saints and sages have always prayed and hoped for a world that is free of disease. To create a better, healthy India, philanthropists and private sectors must come forward to work with government bodies. A coordinated approach is essential to accomplish this mission, Naidu said.

The Vice President added that the healthcare systems that offer solutions for a healthier India must hire personnel who are competent. They should work towards solutions that are affordable and accessible, Naidu said.

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