`Government committed to healthcare for all`

Last Updated: Aug 14, 2013, 22:40 PM IST

New Delhi: The government is committed to making healthcare services affordable and accessible to all, specially in inaccessible areas, Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said here Wednesday.

He said the government has taken numerous steps in this direction.

"Since the launch of the National Rural Health Mission over eight years ago, substantial progress has been achieved in several areas. More than Rs.96,000 crore have been released to 35 state governments," Azad said while addressing the inaugural programme of the Healthcare Skill Summit 2013 here.

He said the health ministry has taken a series of initiatives to overcome acute shortage of human resources in the sector since May 2009.

"These initiatives have brought in positive results, never seen before in the past six decades," he said.

Azad said availability of MBBS seats has gone up from 33,567 to 51,979 since the government took initiatives to address the issue of shortage of doctors. The number of postgraduate seats has increased from 13,838 to 23,931 while 97 new medical colleges, including six new All India Institute of Medical Sciences, have been established.

He said various departments of the ministry are conducting skill development and improvement in the form of short- and long-term specialised training for health professionals.

IANS