Pitching hard for preventive healthcare and public service through collective measures, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said India's healthcare scenario is set to change with the government's emphasis on healthcare for the poor under the new health policy.
At the inauguration of Kiran Hospital in Katargam area of Surat, Modi said the NDA government has brought the National Healthcare Policy after a gap of about 15 years after Atal Bihari Vajpayee's government.
"It is a known fact that India faces shortage of doctors and hospitals. (Therefore,) Our resolve is to provide quality and affordable healthcare, medicines to the poor and middle class. We have directed companies to reduce their margins and provide generic drugs at cheaper rates. About 700 such drugs are put under control. Also, we have asked the heart stent makers to cut their profit share and sell stents at a lower rate," said Modi in the inaugural address. The inauguration was also attended by the Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, his deputy Nitin Patel and former chief minister Anandiben Patel, along with other party leaders.
Modi, who is on a two-day tour to Gujarat, also emphasised on preventive healthcare by practicing yoga and cleanliness.
"This June 21 people should practice yoga in large numbers to gain good health. Another aspect is cleanliness. Surat has set an example in cleanliness after facing an epidemic some years ago," added the Prime Minister after inaugurating the 550-bed hospital run by a Patidar charitable trust.
Modi further stated that charity is an ingrained characteristic of Indian culture, which had started waning post-Independence but now it has regained its momentum.
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The hospital, the foundation stone for which was laid by Modi as then Gujarat chief minister, has been set up by an investment of Rs 500 crore from the charity of leaders of Patidar community and diamond trade.
The hospital has 13 floors with a helipad on its 12th floor and 22 lifts, 113 beds in the ICU and 28 beds in the Operation Theatre. The hospital will cover services from dental to cancer treatment.
Making a public address while inaugurating the hospital , the Prime Minister said he would visit Israel as an ambassador of Surat's diamond industry in July this year. He would be the first Indian Prime Minister to visit the West Asian country.
Surat is the world's largest diamond trading and polishing hub with seven out of 10 diamonds in the world being made in the city. Israel bears significance in the diamond industry for being one of the key players in the world to produce cut diamonds.
"I will visit Israel in July. I will be the first Indian Prime Minister to do so. I will go there as your representative as I know you have trading relations with that country," said Modi in his address.
According to reports, Modi is likely to travel to Israel during his tour for the G20 summit in Hamburg in the first half of July.