Rama Krishna Sangem
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on September 29, Friday launched an ambitious health reach out programme to all – mostly poor people – in next 45 days. This programme is named as “Jagananna Arogya Suraksha”. This programme to be held in five phases – right from door to door visits by health workers to free medical camps and testing and free treatment to the needy. This will go on till middle of November.
After focusing his attention on government education in the last few years, CM Jagan now has decided to concentrate on another major public concern – medical and health needs of the poor, those who cannot afford costly private medicine and personal care. As most of medical care is available only in urban areas and cities, this door to door visits by health workers and doctors will be useful to villagers and the poor in towns and cities too.
In a video conference with the district collectors and other officials on Friday evening, CM Jagan told them to make it a public campaign – and involve all those who are interested in making Andhra Pradesh a healthy state. “Right from village volunteers to public representatives and all my well wishers, all can participate in this programme. Let’s make it a mass movement for health,” said he.
As many as 10,500 villages would be covered under this programme and hundreds of doctors and thousands of health workers would join it. Interestingly, the CM has enlisted the support and participation of private doctors too in it to make up for shortage of specialists a the medical camps and treatment level. Indian Medical Association and other medical bodies too came forward to work with it.
Priority to welfare and basic needs
CM Jagan always projects his government as that of the poor and for the poor. That’s why he gives importance to needs of the poor – their basic needs like education and health. He introduced English medium teaching in all government schools and strengthened infrastructure in all schools in the last five years. Now, this medical reach out too is a part of that mission.
If we go by the observations at Friday video meeting, most of the health needs of the poor people relate to a few issues- malnutrition among women and children. Old people have other issues like BP, sugar and eye sight. They all need simple medical interventions which would be supplied by the government. As many as 7 types of tests would be conducted to people and necessary treatment too would be provided with. Medical test kits and medicines are supplied to doctors.
This pro-poor image and focus on providing basic facilities of people is in contrast with that of previous regime of Chandrababu Naidu led TDP government. Naidu had tried to build a huge capital city – Amaravati and laid emphasis on infrastructure projects. Jagan argues all these big ticket infra projects smacked of corruption and misuse of funds. So, this binary of welfare vs infra push will certainly become an election issue for CM Jagan.