The health priorities
Two unmanned aerial vehicles ( UAV) were tested launched at the JDWRH for the delivery of the medicines including vaccines and blood last Monday. The quad copters was launched by Matter net a company based in California USA, whose vision is to create the next paradigm for transportation by using a network of unmanned aerial vehicles. The drones does not need pilot and work on GPS way points from on landing point to the next. It carries packages weighing about 2 kgs and covers a distance of 10 km at a time.
The UAV are used for different purposes round the world and are mostly used in military, livestock monitoring, wild life mapping, pipe line security, home security and road patrol. In India the drones are used for law and order and aerial surveillance. Moreover in Nepal it is used to monitor rhinos, tigers and elephants and deter poachers. In times of disaster it can be use to collect data, initiate relief operation and delivery of essential items to the places not reached by road. The road safety officials can use them to monitor the traffic and courier service for the delivery of parcels. .
In Bhutan taking into account the limited accessibility of roads and rugged terrain, these aerial vehicles will prove beneficial in the faster de- livery of life saving drugs and vaccines for a patient located in a remote corner of the country. The benefits may be many and we must appreciate the Heath Ministry’s noble initiative.
However it is not easier said the done for a developing country like ours where 12% of our population lives below the poverty line. The priority must be to uplift the population living below the poverty line. The health care is equally important to uplift the living standard of our people but education plays a very important role too. . With wholesome education system put in place an individual can not only perform better in the labor market but also helps to improve the overall heath, promotes active citizenship and contain violence.
More over on the heath sector more needs to be done with regard to combating the non - communicable diseases (NCD’s) cause by tobacco use, lack of physical inactivity, the harmful use of alcohol and unhealthy diets. With the rapid urbanization, unhealthy food habits and sedentary life style these disease are on the rise in Bhutan. The government has been spending a substantial amount of the budget in treating these diseases so far.
But for now we must prioritize things, which will help us in providing the most efficient, reliable and sustainable heath system in our county.