"The MDG deadline is September 2015 and we are still a long way off. There are many things you all could do to reduce the mortality rate of children. If developed countries can do it, we too should because there is no paucity of money or human resources," he told the doctors and staff of Kalawati Saran Children's Hospital here.
The United Nations' (UN) MDGs -- ranging from halving extreme poverty rates to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education -- form a blueprint agreed to by all the world's countries and all leading development institutions.
Harsh Vardhan, who visited the hospital to review the sanitation drive, spent close to two hours inspecting every ward and department along with toilet facilities, an official statement said.
Vardhan: If developed countries can do it, we should too do it
Reviewing the infrastructure, Harsh Vardhan assured that the vacant posts of doctors, staff and faculty at Lady Hardinge Medical College (part of Kalawati Saran Hospital) will be "filled up soon".
He added that the health ministry will ensure the proposals sent by the hospital were cleared expeditiously.
"I will be keen to see improvements in your hospital because it is crucial to our objective of meeting the UN deadline," Harsh Vardhan added.
Harsh Vardhan, who interacted with departmental heads, was told the hospital lacks full time technicians to attend to problems with equipment immediately.
He was told that due to this, the hospital has to "reluctantly" rely on vendor technicians, the statement said.
It added the minister noted inconsistencies in the prescriptions written by resident doctors and said: "Senior doctors need to train the juniors on the necessity of rational prescribing of drugs."