Centre working in spirit of cooperative federalism with states: Mandaviya

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New Delhi, Aug 16, 2022, IANS

The Central government is working in the spirit of cooperative federalism with the states and the union territories to develop multi-tier health infrastructure network, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya said on Tuesday.

The Health Minister said this while virtually reviewing the implementation of flagship schemes including National Health Mission (NHM), various projects under Emergency Covid Response Package (ECRP)-II with the states, here on Tuesday.

"The Central government has been working in the spirit of cooperative and collaborative federalism with states and UTs for creating, expanding and strengthening a multi-tier health infrastructure network across the country," he said while reviewing the flagship schemes like the Pradhan Mantri Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission (PM-ABHIM) and 15th Finance Commission grants with states.

Mandaviya also reviewed the progress of national Covid-19 vaccination campaign with focus on precaution dose under Covid Vaccination Amrit Mahotsav. Highlighting the achievements of Covid Vaccination, Mandaviya urged the states/UTs to accelerate coverage of precaution dose among population aged 18 years and above under Covid Vaccination Amrit Mahotsava.

He also advised them to widely publicise the availability of heterologous precaution dose of CorBEvax vaccine, and to organise vaccination camps at public places.

Mandaviya said that the pandemic has taught us to invest in critical care infrastructure in every district and block.

He assured that the Central government is committed to supporting states/UTs in their efforts towards providing accessible, affordable, quality and equitable public healthcare services to the citizens.

Expressing concern regarding the lower utilisation of central funds in some states, he noted that "instead of the Centre reviewing the low funds utilisation, the states ought to enhance their performance and expeditiously seek funds from the Centre for speedy implementation of health schemes".

He added that various flexibilities have been extended to states for timely utilisation of the funds and creation of health infrastructure under the packages/flagship programmes. Funds under ECRP-II need to be utilised soon as the package is available till December 2022, he emphasised

States and UTs were also advised to ensure that all vaccine doses are utilised on the basis of FEFO (First Expiry First Out) principle to avoid expiry of the vaccines.

Chief Minister of Tripura Manik Saha and Delhi Deputy Chief Minister and Health Minister of Delhi, Manish Sisodia attended the meeting.

This was part of a series of meetings chaired by the Health Minister to review progress and expedite utilisation of central funds to states under various schemes and packages.

Bharati Pravin Pawar, Minister of State for Health was also present in the meeting.