Several ministries, including of health and agriculture, will come together on February 22 to launch a campaign against anti-microbial resistance (AMR), Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda said.
Nadda said that the initiative was being taken to strategise a proper plan against the AMR and to avoid any kind of mismatch by various departments obstructing the efforts of the government.
‘One of the major initiatives the health ministry has taken as part of the health budget is the upgradation of 1.5 lakh sub-centres into wellness centres across the country.’
"The ministries will also have their Memorandum of Understandings over the issue," said Nadda. Anti-microbial resistant bacteria are responsible for high-mortality diseases such as pneumonia, diarrhea and sepsis.
Addressing the media for the first time after the announcement of the Union Budget on February 1, Nadda said that the government is taking a slew of measures to strengthen the country's health system and the budget allocation for health in the coming years will see a constant rise.
The budget allocation for the health sector for 2017-18 is Rs 48,853 crore, 27 percent higher than last year, which stood at Rs 39,688 crore. "This budget has a sizable increase. The total increase that we have got is Rs 11,165 crores which is 27.77 percent," said Nadda.
One of the major initiatives the health ministry has taken as part of the health budget is the upgradation of 1.5 lakh sub-centres into wellness centres across the country.
Nadda said that the government aims to improve the sub-centres by adopting universal schemes. "We will do this in 100 districts this year. It will be in phased manner," said Nadda.
Asked about the money allocated for the upgradation of sub-centres to wellness centres, Nadda told IANS: "It's a continuous process. We have not kept a separate budget for that (wellness centres)." However, Health Secretary C.K. Mishra said that the allocations might vary for the wellness centres from state to state.
On the occasion, Nadda also said that the government has been unable to get land in four states to set up medical facilities on the lines of the premier All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).
He said the states were Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Himachal Pradesh and Assam. According to the ministry, though it has identified land in Assam, an issue related to the National Green Tribunal has cropped up.