Union Min­is­ter for Health & Fam­ily Wel­fare

Shri J. P. Nadda

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In­dian Vac­cine Reg­u­la­tory Sys­tem was as­sessed by WHO against Global Bench­mark­ing Tool (GBT) com­pris­ing 9 func­tions for mea­sur­ing the ma­tu­rity of In­dian Vac­cine Reg­u­la­tory Sys­tem viz. Na­tional Reg­u­la­tory Sys­tem; Reg­is­tra­tion & Mar­ket­ing Au­tho­riza­tion; Vig­i­lance; Market Sur­veil­lance & Con­trol; Li­cens­ing Premises; Reg­u­la­tory In­spec­tions; Lab­o­ra­tory Ac­cess & Test­ing; Clin­i­cal Trial Over­sight; and NRA Lot Re­lease. WHO has given high­est pos­si­ble rat­ing of 4 to Reg­is­tra­tion & Mar­ket­ing Au­tho­riza­tion; Vig­i­lance; Lab­o­ra­tory Ac­cess & Test­ing; Clin­i­cal Trial Over­sight; and NRA Lot Re­lease. WHO has given a rat­ing of 3 in re­spect of the re­main­ing four func­tions. The as­sess­ment was car­ried out by a WHO team com­pris­ing ex­perts with

decades of ex­pe­ri­ence in dif­fer­ent ar­eas of Reg­u­la­tory Sys­tems in Reg­u­la­tory Agen­cies, Lab­o­ra­to­ries & In­sti­tutes from WHO Hqrs, WHO In­dia of­fice, USA, Italy, Ger­many, Nether­land, In­done­sia, Thai­land and Egypt. In­dian Na­tional Reg­u­la­tory Agency has been de­clared func­tional by WHO based on the most com­pre­hen­sive as­sess­ment ever car­ried out by WHO any­where in the world with 63 in­di­ca­tors and 288 sub-in­di­ca­tors. The Min­is­ter of State (Health and Fam­ily Wel­fare), Sh Fag­gan Singh Ku­laste stated this in a writ­ten re­ply in the Lok Sabha.

Cabi­net ap­proves Na­tional Health Pol­icy 2017

Terming the Cabi­net ap­proval of the Na­tional Health Pol­icy 2017 as a huge mile­stone in the his­tory of pub­lic health in the coun­try, Union Min­is­ter for Health & Fam­ily Wel­fare Shri J P Nadda said that it seeks to reach ev­ery­one in a com­pre­hen­sive in­te­grated way to move to­wards well­ness. Shri Nadda added that NHP 2017, which is pa­tient-cen­tric and qual­ity-driven, pro­vides the much needed pol­icy frame­work for achiev­ing uni­ver­sal health cov­er­age and de­liv­er­ing qual­ity health care ser­vices to all at an af­ford­able cost. The Union Health Min­is­ter stated un­der the guid­ance of the Hon. Prime Min­is­ter Shri Naren­dra Modiji, the Health Min­istry has for­mu­lated the Na­tional Health Pol­icy 2017, af­ter a gap of 14 years, to ad­dress the cur­rent and emerg­ing chal­lenges ne­ces­si­tated by the chang­ing so­cio-eco­nomic and epi­demi­o­log­i­cal land­scapes since the last Na­tional Health Pol­icy was framed in 2002. Shri Nadda said that “The Pol­icy rec­om­mends pri­or­i­tiz­ing the role of the Govern­ment in shap­ing health sys­tems in all its di­men­sions. The roadmap of this new Pol­icy is pred­i­cated on pub­lic spend­ing and pro­vi­sion­ing of a pub­lic health­care sys­tem that is com­pre­hen­sive, in­te­grated and ac­ces­si­ble to all. Fur­ther, it ad­vo­cates a pos­i­tive and proac­tive en­gage­ment with the pri­vate sec­tor for crit­i­cal gap fill­ing to­wards achiev­ing na­tional goals. It en­vis­ages pri­vate sec­tor col­lab­o­ra­tion for strate­gic pur­chas­ing, ca­pac­ity build­ing, skill de­vel­op­ment pro­grammes, aware­ness gen­er­a­tion, de­vel­op­ing sus­tain­able net­works for com­mu­nity to strengthen men­tal health ser­vices, and dis­as­ter man­age­ment”. The Min­is­ter added that the Pol­icy ad­vo­cates fi­nan­cial and non-fi­nan­cial in­cen­tives for en­cour­ag­ing the pri­vate sec­tor par­tic­i­pa­tion. NHP 2017 seeks to pro­mote qual­ity of care, fo­cus on emerg­ing dis­eases and in­vest in pro­mo­tive and pre­ven­tive health­care. It ad­dresses health se­cu­rity and make in In­dia for drugs and de­vices. The Pol­icy has also as­signed spe­cific quan­ti­ta­tive tar­gets aimed at re­duc­tion of dis­ease preva­lence/in­ci­dence, for health sta­tus and pro­gramme im­pact, health sys­tem per­for­mance and sys­tem strength­en­ing. It seeks to strengthen the health sur­veil­lance sys­tem and es­tab­lish reg­istries for dis­eases of

pub­lic health im­por­tance, by 2020. It also seeks to align other poli­cies for med­i­cal de­vices and equip­ment with pub­lic health goals. Elab­o­rat­ing on the salient fea­tures of the NHP 2017, Shri Nadda said that the Pol­icy ad­vo­cates a pro­gres­sively in­cre­men­tal as­sur­ance-based ap­proach. The broad prin­ci­ples of the Pol­icy are cen­tered on pro­fes­sion­al­ism, in­tegrity and ethics, equity, af­ford­abil­ity, uni­ver­sal­ity, pa­tient cen­tered and qual­ity of care, ac­count­abil­ity and plu­ral­ism. It aims to achieve the high­est pos­si­ble level of good health and well-be­ing through a pre­ven­tive and pro­mo­tive health care ori­en­ta­tion in all de­vel­op­men­tal poli­cies, and to achieve uni­ver­sal ac­cess to good qual­ity health care ser­vices with­out any­one hav­ing to face fi­nan­cial hard­ship as a con­se­quence, Shri Nadda added. There is a sharp­ened fo­cus to in­form, clar­ify, strengthen and pri­or­i­tize the role of the Govern­ment in shap­ing health sys­tems in all its di­men­sions-in­vest­ment in health, or­ga­ni­za­tion and fi­nanc­ing of health­care ser­vices, pre­ven­tion of dis­eases and pro­mo­tion of good health through cross sec­toral ac­tion, ac­cess to tech­nolo­gies, de­vel­op­ing hu­man re­sources, en­cour­ag­ing med­i­cal plu­ral­ism, build­ing the knowl­edge base re­quired for bet­ter health, fi­nan­cial pro­tec­tion strate­gies and reg­u­la­tion and pro­gres­sive as­sur­ance for health. The Min­is­ter also said that the Pol­icy em­pha­sizes re­ori­ent­ing and strength­en­ing the pub­lic health in­sti­tu­tions across the coun­try, so as to pro­vide uni­ver­sal ac­cess to free drugs, di­ag­nos­tics and other es­sen­tial health­care. The Pol­icy po­si­tions pri­mary health­care to be com­pre­hen­sive and uni­ver­sal. It also seeks to en­sure im­proved ac­cess and af­ford­abil­ity of qual­ity sec­ondary and ter­tiary care ser­vices through a com­bi­na­tion of pub­lic hos­pi­tals and strate­gic pur­chas­ing in health­care deficit ar­eas from ac­cred­ited non-gov­ern­men­tal health­care providers, achieve sig­nif­i­cant re­duc­tion in out of pocket ex­pen­di­ture due to health­care costs, re­in­force trust in pub­lic health­care sys­tem and in­flu­ence op­er­a­tion and growth of pri­vate health­care in­dus­try as well as med­i­cal tech­nolo­gies in align­ment with pub­lic health goals. As a cru­cial com­po­nent, the Pol­icy pro­poses rais­ing pub­lic health ex­pen­di­ture to 2.5% of the GDP in a time bound man­ner. It en­vis­ages pro­vid­ing larger pack­age of as­sured com­pre­hen­sive pri­mary health care through the ‘Health and Well­ness Cen­ters’ and de­notes im­por­tant change from very se­lec­tive to com­pre­hen­sive pri­mary health care pack­age which in­cludes geri­atric health care, pal­lia­tive care and re­ha­bil­i­ta­tive care ser­vices. It ad­vo­cates al­lo­cat­ing ma­jor pro­por­tion (up to two-thirds or more) of re­sources to pri­mary care fol­lowed by sec­ondary and ter­tiary care. It also as­pires to pro­vide at the district level most of the sec­ondary care which is cur­rently pro­vided at a med­i­cal col­lege hospi­tal. In or­der to pro­vide ac­cess and fi­nan­cial pro­tec­tion at sec­ondary and ter­tiary care lev­els, NHP 2017 pro­poses free drugs, free di­ag­nos­tics and free emer­gency care ser­vices in all pub­lic hos­pi­tals. The Pol­icy en­vis­ages strate­gic pur­chase of sec­ondary and ter­tiary care ser­vices as a short term mea­sure to sup­ple­ment and fill crit­i­cal gaps in the pub­lic health sys­tem. Na­tional Health Pol­icy 2017 af­firms com­mit­ment to pre-emp­tive care (aimed at pre-empt­ing the oc­cur­rence of dis­eases) to achieve op­ti­mum lev­els of child and ado­les­cent health. It en­vis­ages school health pro­grammes as a ma­jor fo­cus area as also health and hy­giene be­ing made a part of the school cur­ricu­lum. In or­der to lever­age the plu­ral­is­tic health care legacy, NHP 2017 rec­om­mends main­stream­ing the dif­fer­ent health sys­tems: bet­ter ac­cess to AYUSH reme­dies through colo­ca­tion in pub­lic fa­cil­i­ties; Yoga would be in­tro­duced much more widely in school and work places as part of pro­mo­tion of good health. Un­der a ‘giv­ing back to so­ci­ety’ ini­tia­tive, the new Health Pol­icy sup­ports vol­un­tary ser­vice in ru­ral and un­der-served ar­eas on probono ba­sis by rec­og­nized health­care pro­fes­sion­als. It also ad­vo­cates ex­ten­sive de­ploy­ment of dig­i­tal tools for im­prov­ing the ef­fi­ciency and out­come of the health­care sys­tem and pro­poses es­tab­lish­ment of Na­tional Dig­i­tal Health Author­ity (NDHA) to reg­u­late, de­velop and de­ploy dig­i­tal health across the con­tin­uum of care. There is also a strong fo­cus on im­prov­ing reg­u­la­tory mech­a­nisms rec­og­niz­ing the need to reg­u­late the use of med­i­cal de­vices so as to en­sure safety and qual­ity com­pli­ance as per the stan­dard norms. Govern­ment of In­dia for­mu­lated the Draft Na­tional Health Pol­icy and placed it in pub­lic do­main on 30th De­cem­ber, 2014. There­after fol­low­ing de­tailed con­sul­ta­tions with the stake­hold­ers and State Gov­ern­ments, based on the sug­ges­tions re­ceived, the Draft Na­tional Health Pol­icy was fur­ther fine-tuned. It re­ceived the en­dorse­ment of the Cen­tral Coun­cil for Health & Fam­ily Wel­fare, the apex pol­icy mak­ing body, in its Twelfth Con­fer­ence held on 27th Fe­bru­ary, 2016

The Min­is­ter of State (Health and Fam­ily Wel­fare), Sh. Fag­gan Singh Ku­laste

Union Min­is­ter for Health & Fam­ily Wel­fare Shri J. P. Nadda

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