India needs a robust and vibrant public health system : Azad

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New Delhi, Sep18 (ANI): Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad on Friday said that to improve the standard of public health, there is a need for introducing a robust and vibrant public health system in the country.

Speaking after presenting the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) awards here Azad said: "To improve the health of the public, we need a robust and vibrant public health system in the country. This manpower serves dual purpose of service and epidemiological research. As you are aware, there is an acute shortage of trained public health professionals in the country."

Azad also appreciated the work taken up by the ICMR in the public health sector in association with the country's major medical institutes.

"The results of the work carried out by ICMR institutes often become the backbone of national programmes for the control and prevention of diseases. Many of the recommendations of ICMR institutes have either been taken up in the National Control Programmes or are in the process of being taken up," Azad said.

Stressing on the need for public participation in implementing health programmes Azad said: "Participation of community in any control programme goes a long way in the successful completion of any project. This has been shown by the success in the significant reduction in the incidence of lymphatic filaria in Kerala where community played a significant role in achieving the objectives of the project."

Azad also called on researchers to concentrate on emerging challenges in the health sector.

"We have been observing an increasing trend in the prevalence of life style diseases including diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and cancer. India is being named as the Diabetes capital of the world. I would like the scientists to develop cost-effective technologies for diagnosis and monitoring of rapidly evolving life style diseases particularly Diabetes. These technologies should be easy to use and which can be provided to the peripheral health workers at the community level," Azad said.

Azad also recalled the contribution made by the Regional Medical Research Centres of ICMR though located in under served and remote areas of country.

"The regional medical research centres have played a significant role in creating awareness and better understanding in the health problems of the population in these areas. Tribal health research undertaken by ICMR institutes, especially in the area of genetic disorders, leptospirosis, and hepatitis B have been significant and helped the government. to initiate appropriate control measures."

This year's ICMR research awards were presented to the works in communicable and non-communicable diseases, including areas of maternal and child health and basic medical sciences. (ANI)

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