Volunteer for rural assignments: Azad to medical grads

Updated: Dec 27, 2011, 00:30 AM IST

Udaipur: Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad today asked young medical graduates to take up rural assignments voluntarily to help provide improved health care services in these areas.

Speaking at the inauguration of a university here, he called for a bigger role for the private sector in funding higher education.

"Governments alone cannot shoulder the responsibility in view of this huge requirement. Therefore, the private sector has to also play an extremely important role by sharing the burden of the state in funding higher education," he said.

He emphasised that while ensuring efficiency in teaching and improvement in quality, private sector institutions should also take affirmative action to help the weaker and disadvantaged sections to acquire professional and higher education needed in today`s world.

Observing that health and medicine is a dynamic field requiring swift responses to emerging threats and adaptation of better technology, Azad said the situation is more complicated in India because of triple burden of communicable diseases, their rapid increase and repeated infections.

Government has done its utmost to make health care services, accessible, affordable and equitable for the benefit of the people, particularly the poorest households in the remotest regions of the country, he said.

Allocation for health sector has been substantially enhanced from Rs 36,378 crores in the 10th Plan to Rs 1,36,147 crores in the 11th Plan.

An outlay of Rs 22,300 crores for the financial year 2010-11 was made and the plan allocations were further stepped up in 2011-12 by 20 per cent to Rs 26,760 crore, he said.