Vice President Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday called upon Centre and state governments to work in tandem to strengthen health care infrastructure by taking a ‘holistic view’ of health, incorporating physical, mental and spiritual well being of people across the country in it.
Naidu’s remarks via video conferencing came in the course of a function here organised by a private television channel NDTV titled ‘Banega Swasth India’. He said this ‘holistic approach towards health’ would lead the country from being a healthy or ‘Swastha’ to a ‘Sampanna’ or prosperous India.
Referring to the gains made in health indices since Independence, the Vice President underlined the need for both the centre and states to work with ‘renewed vigour’ to further improve the health indices. He said there was a need for increased public spending on health and health infrastructure at various levels through public-private partnership.
“While bringing tertiary care to rural areas, it is imperative that we strengthen our primary health care system for better health outcomes,” Naidu said, lauding the central government’s flagship Ayushman Bharat programme which he claimed had brought ‘health assurance’ to millions of poor families.
The Vice President particularly stressed on the need for taking care of the health of India’s large population of youths. He pointed out that about 65 per cent of the country’s population comprised youths below the 35 years old age category.
“He exhorted the youth to adopt a healthy and disciplined lifestyle by undertaking regular physical activity like yoga or cycling and eating healthy food. He advised youngsters to avoid getting addicted to digital devices… Naidu called for creating greater awareness among people on lifestyle diseases. He urged health experts and cultural icons to take the lead in this regard,” a note from the Vice President’s office later quoting Venkaiah Naidu said.
Praising the frontline Covid health care workers such as doctors, paramedics, sanitation workers, police and media persons the Vice President said they had all displayed ‘extraordinary resilience, courage and spirit of sacrifice’ while fighting the pandemic and serving the people.
Naidu said the pandemic had also drawn the attention of the world towards the need for avoiding any interference with the natural ecosystem for selfish gains, an implicit reference to the global suspicions about the Covid-19 virus being man-made.