Balangir (Odisha): At the recent inauguration of the Medical College at Balangir, Union Health Minister JP Nadda informed about the growth of medical education in India.
He informed that at present there are 502 medical colleges in the country, out of them 118 new medical colleges – 54 government and 64 private – have been opened since 2014-15. Against 52,000 MBBS seats in 2013-14, there are now more than 70,000 undergraduate seats for medical studies.
Regarding the state of Odisha, the Union health minister said new medical colleges are being established in Odisha in the district headquarter hospitals at Balasore, Baripada, Balangir, Koraput and Puri. Medical colleges under Bhadrak, Jajpur and Dhenkanal have also been announced.
Speaking on the occaddion, Odisha CM Patnaik said the opening of the long-awaited medical college and hospital here has fulfilled the dream of the people of western Odisha and will go a long way in providing quality health care service in the area.
Iterating his government’s commitment to providing improved health service to the people, he said the state government is making a constant effort to improve health care and medical education in remote and tribal-dominated areas.
Noting that there were 321 MBBS seats in the state in 2000 (when Patnaik became the chief minister), he said the number of seats has increased to 950 after the opening of the medical colleges and hospitals in Koraput, Mayurbhanj and Balangir.
After the inauguration of the medical college and hospital in Balasore next month, Odisha will have a total 1050 MBBS seats, Patnaik said.
Admission in 100 seats in Balangir medical college, named after legendary poet Santha Kabi Bhima Bhoi, began from the current academic session.
The medical college and hospital has been constructed at a cost of Rs 300 crore, of which Rs 205 crore was given by the state government and the rest provided by the Centre, officials said.
Union Health Minister J P Nadda also the Odisha government to implement the Centre’s Ayushman Bharat scheme along with its own Biju Swastha Kalyan programme for better health protection for the people. The state government had earlier rejected the Centre’s Ayushman Bharat scheme claiming that its own programme was much better.
“I urge the chief minister to adopt the Ayushman Bharat scheme of the central government along with the state’s own programme. Both the Centre and the state should work together for the protection of people’s health,” he said.
The Centre has always supported the state government in strengthening its health system, the Union minister said.
If Odisha does not implement the Ayushman Bharat scheme, many who need the benefits most may be deprived of them, he said, adding people covered under the central scheme would be able to get free health service even outside side their states.
He urged the Odisha government to implement the Deendayal AMRIT Scheme in all medical colleges in the state to enable patients to get branded medicines at affordable prices, Nadda said.