LAHORE: A consultative workshop has presented its recommendations for formulation of workable new health policy.
“Huge population is a big issued in the country. Nothing can be changed if we do not focus on family planning” said the experts. Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid and Population Welfare Minister Col (r) Muhammad Hashim Doggar co-chaired the workshop. Health Secretary Saqib Zaffer and eminent scholars from different walks of life were also present.
“Preventive medical healthcare is the fundamental need of any change in health facilities. Ever-increasing population is a severe challenge for resources. Marriages in premature age badly disturb health structure; government should consider Iranian model of counselling before wedding”, recommended the participants in the workshop. They also noted that by improving mother and child health, many targets of general health could be achieved. Moreover, a strong political will was necessary for strengthening the health sector, they said.
Dr Yasmin Rashid in her key address announced that Punjab government would establish four mother and child hospitals at Attock, Mianwali, Bhakkar and Rajinpur. “Despite law and order situation, we are sitting here to find out new arenas for improvement in health sector. No matter how worse is the situation, we would only think about betterment of our people. This consultative workshop is a preamble of new health policy”, she said. She also said that health insurance schemes would be launched in December and each health card holder family would be provided with health coverage of Rs 370,000. The health minister also announced the revival of lady health workers cadre.
Col (R) Hashim Doggar, commending the commitment of Dr Yasmin Rashid, said that he never saw such a brave and hard working woman throughout his life. The minister also pledged that both health and population welfare departments would work jointly for the success of the family planning schemes. He also appreciated that Chief Justice of Pakistan took suo motu of family planning issue. “We would implement the directions passed by the honourable court in letter and spirit” he said.