GUWAHATI: State Health and Family Welfare Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has said that the Atal Amrit Abhiyan continues to give succour and strength to cancer patients being registered around 30,000 every year in Assam. He has also said that the perimeter of this Abhiyan is also being expanded from November 1 this year by bringing under it the treatment of six more diseases. A patient can get free treatment costing up to Rs 2 lakh under the Atal Amrit Abhiyan.
Talking to newsmen here on Wednesday, Sarma said, “Of the around 60,000 patients benefitted under the Abhiyan in the State so far, 27,000 are cancer patients. The government had to spend Rs 140 crore for the treatment of the 60,000 patients under the Abhiyan.”
Now diseases relating to cardiology, neurology, burn injuries, kidney and neo-natal care come under the Abhiyan. Sarma, however, said, “From November 1 this year, we’re going to bring the treatment of six more diseases – ICU package, trauma, critical care of paediatrics up to 14 years of age, bone marrow transplantation, JE (Japanese Encephalitis) and AES (Acute Encephalitis Syndrome) under the Abhiyan. Trauma, mainly accidents, is being brought under it to ensure immediate medical care. The treatment of these six diseases under the Abhiyan will also be made available in private hospitals, but after one month. Within a month, we need to sign a MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with private hospitals for making such a treatment facility available with them as well.”
With this announcement, the minister said that JE and AES treatment has been made absolutely free in the State. On adult vaccination for JE, Sarma said, “For complete adult vaccination we will have to wait for another year because of dearth of the vaccine. The Chinese producer of this vaccine — the only such producer in the world — cannot supply the vaccine fulfilling our requirement. We’ve ordered 2.5 core vaccines. The Chinese producer, however, said that it will supply 25 lakh vaccines by December this year; and the remaining quantity by July 2020. That is why we will have to fight JE and AES till July 2020 in the way we are tackling these ailments as of now.”
On the progress of work for the AIIMS (All India Institute of Medical Sciences) project in North Guwahati, Sarma said, “The State government has spent Rs 250 crore on it completing around 25 per cent of the works. The rest will be spent by the Centre. We hope that the AIIMS will start functioning from 2021.”
On the alleged malpractices by a section of doctors working in government hospitals and medical colleges in the State, the Minister said, “We’re keeping a close watch on such matters. We’ve already arrested a number of doctors for such unscrupulous acts.”