PM nod to task force for health sector
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on March 17, 2006 gave his approval to setting up of a task force on planning for human resources in the health sector.
“There is a huge gap in human resources in the health sector in India which includes doctors, nurses and lab technicians. This has been highlighted by the national commission on macroeconomics and health in its report,” a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) said.
“There were also growing opportunities with India emerging as a major international centre for low cost healthcare. The fact that India is demographically a young nation gives it an opportunity to have its trained personnel meeting the healthcare needs of the demographically ageing countries,” the statement further said.
According to sources, development of the health sector would also plug in the continuing brain drain of healthcare professionals, from doctors and nurses to auxiliary nursing staff, to other countries.
The prime minister has asked deputy chairman of the Planning Commission Montek Singh Ahluwalia to set up the task force that would have representatives from the union health ministry, ministry of health of selected states and professional experts.
It would map the gaps in the health sector, identify new opportunities and submit a human development plan. This was also keeping in mind the fact that the ministry of tourism has in the recent past stepped up efforts to tap the medical tourism boom in the country.
According to sources in the PMO, development of the health sector would also plug in the continuing brain drain of Indian healthcare professionals, from doctors and nurses to auxiliary nursing staff, to other countries.
“Rather than have them go out of India, the task force will look at ways in which people can be encouraged to seek medical treatment at lower costs in India and provide attractive employment opportunities for people in the healthcare sector,” said an official in the PMO.