ISLAMABAD (Pakistan) – Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif today launched National Health Program for free medical treatment, of the poor and destitute people.
“It is our duty to provide the best medical care to poor people and this program is just a step further in executing our responsibility,” PM Nawaz said at the inaugural ceremony of the National Health Program.
Nawaz Sharif said medical facilities will be provided at both the government and private hospitals.
He said, “Three hundred thousand rupees will be provided to each patient suffering from a fatal disease; however, Baitul Mal will provide additional money if necessary for treatment.”
He said that program is a step towards fulfillment of the PML-N promise for the establishment of a welfare state.
The program aimed at providing quality healthcare has been launched in 15 districts and would be later expanded to 23 in next phase. Around 1.2 million card holder families would get this facility in the first phase.
“We have no other option but to make this program a success,” the prime minister said, adding there should not be any politics involved in health-related initiatives.
Under the program health care cards will be issued to the beneficiaries on whom they will get free medical treatment of seven diseases.
The scheme offers free of cost treatment for ailments such as cardiovascular diseases, Diabetes Mellitus, Burma and RTA (life and limb saving treatment, implants, prosthesis). It will also cover end-stage renal diseases and dialysis, chronic infections (Hepatitis), organ failure (Hepatic, Renal, Cardiopulmonary) and cancer treatment (Chemo, Radio and Surgery).
State Life Insurance Corporation has won a contract to execute the multi-billion rupees ‘Prime Minister.s National Health Program’ by placing the lowest bid.
The State Life gave a Rs999.99 per family offer for secondary care and Rs299.99 for tertiary care, bringing its total bid to Rs1300 per family. The State Life Insurance Corporation is under the administrative control of Ministry of Commerce.
The prime minister also thanked chairman National Database Registration Authority (NADRA) for providing the technical assistance.
The Prime Minister said the poor will not have to sell their belongings and house-hold items to get treatment and purchase medicines.
The Prime Minister said strong action will be taken against those who attempt to create hurdles in the way of the implementation of the program, or misuse it.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, Commerce Minister Khurram Dastagir, Minister of State for National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination Saira Afzal Tarar, Minister of State for Interior Baleegh ur Rehman, Minister for CADD Dr.Tariq Fazal and Maryam Nawaz Sharif attended the ceremony.