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No takers for the ‘Draft Healthcare Policy-2018’

No takers for the ‘Draft Healthcare Policy-2018’
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Submitted twice for approval, policy gathering dust

Srinagar: The comprehensive Draft Healthcare Policy-2018 that was submitted by the Health Department twice this year, is still gathering dust in the Civil Secretariat as the policy has not been approved as yet.

Notably, the former Director Health Services, Dr Saleem ur Rehman had submitted the Draft of the Policy twice, in the month of April and then again in June, but to no avail, as there has been no response from the government even after the passage of more than 6 months.

On the other side, Principal Secretary, Health and Medical Education (H&ME) Atal Dulloo said that the government is trying to do it in a step-wise manner (while not referring to the Draft Healthcare Policy-2018) and has already started it by taking a slew of measures.

“So far, we have approved the Drug- De-addiction Policy which has been drafted by the experts from IMHANS, and GMC Srinagar and Jammu. The Health Department had put forth the Transfer Policy, that too was approved. We are on it, and it shall be done in a step-wise manner,” he said.

The government recently approved the Drug De-addiction policy which is open in public for comments, however, the Draft Healthcare Policy-2018 that had recommended series of steps for the betterment of the state healthcare, is yet to see the daylight.

Pertinently, while the Animal Husbandry Department is almost done with its Livestock Policy—aiming at reforms—the State is, as of now, ironically functioning without the much-needed healthcare policy.

The Principal Secretary said that there are always hurdles that come in the way of implementing major policy changes, “take for example the Transfer Policy, though, it has been implemented, but it still is facing certain hurdles in case of its efficient implementation on the ground,” he said.

Ironically, the policy submitted months ago is yet to reach to the policymakers in the government as the Principal Secretary feigned ignorance regarding the Draft Healthcare Policy, he, however, assured that he will have a look into it.

“I will certainly look into it and will see what can be done, you see there are always some aspects when it comes to the policy-making, which are difficult to implement, but I assure you that I will look into it and see what is it all about,” he said.

Pertinently, the maiden Health Care Policy was aimed at achieving the highest possible level of healthcare, well-being for all at all ages, through a preventive and promotive health care orientation in all developmental policies and universal access to good quality health care services, without anyone having to face financial hardship as a consequence.

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