Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Saturday called for addressing the shortage of trained human resources in the health sector on a war footing and stressed on the need for creating more medical colleges in line with the government's intention of setting up one medical college and hospital in every district of the country.
Speaking at the convocation of the University College of Medical Sciences in the national capital, Naidu stressed that the first step to achieving the goal of 'Health for All' is to increase public spending on health.
Referring to the paucity of paramedical staff in the country, Naidu called for improving the nurse to population ratio (1:670 in India, compared to the WHO norm of 1:300) in a mission mode. On the shortage of trained manpower in rural areas, he suggested creating better incentives and infrastructure to attract health care workers to serve in the villages.
He also referred to the 15th Finance Commission recommendations, which said that states should increase spending on health to more than 8 per cent of their respective budgets by 2022 and the public health expenditure of the Centre and states together should be increased in a progressive manner to reach 2.5 per cent of GDP by 2025.
Lauding the 'critical role' of paramedical personnel in healthcare, the Vice President said the importance of the service they render came to the fore during the pandemic as they worked tirelessly over the past year.
He observed that Indian nurses and paramedical staff have earned a great reputation and demand globally over the years with their skills, dedication and caring nature.
"The need of the hour is to leverage the innate skill among our youth to train more allied health workers and assign a larger role for them in our public health", he said