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India doesn't agree to WHO's estimate of Covid deaths: Mandaviya

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Kevadia, May 07: India records its deaths due to Covid through a transparent and legal process and does not agree to the WHO's estimate of Covid mortality for the country, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya said on Saturday.

Mansukh Mandaviya

He also said the 14th Conference of Central Council of Health & Family Welfare (CCHFW) passed a resolution in this regard.

The resolution was passed on the second day of the three-day CCHFW -'Swasthya Chintab Shivir', which concluded here on Saturday.

Mandaviya said the registration of births and deaths in the country is extremely robust and is governed by the decades-old statutory legal framework the Births and Deaths Registration Act, 1969.

"On the 2nd day of the conference of the CCHFW yesterday we have passed a resolution that we do not agree to the WHO's estimate of Covid mortality for India," he said, referring to the WHO estimate of 4.7 million Covid-related deaths in India.

"India records its deaths through a transparent and legal process. All the states and union territories provided correct and authentic data to the registry," he said.

Appreciating the participation of around 25 health and medical education ministers in the 'Swasthya Chintan Shivir', Mandaviya said, "we have been enriched by deep insight of knowledge due to presentation of best practices by states." He further stated that all states have shared one best practice, so now we have more than 25 best practices to learn from and implement across the country. Goals of centre and states are complementary. It is the goal of state which would define policy making at the central level.

Highlighting the importance of working in the spirit of cooperative federalism, Mandaviya stated that "states goals provide us national goals".

"They provide us roadmap for various policies. The Swasthya Shivir has laid foundation of 'Healthy Family' for the country. Let's resolve and take a pledge to ensure best implementation of health policies for wellbeing of our citizens to fulfill aim of Antyodaya. The citizen in the last mile should be our priority for delivery of health services," he stated.

The minister emphasised that "health is not a commerce but a seva for us. We are committed to promote medical tourism and 'Heal by India' and 'Heal in India' are the two vital pillars of our health ecosystem in the years to come which will position India as a global health leader." Mandaviya appealed everyone to "join the soon to be launched 'TB Patient/Village Adoption' scheme where everyone can adopt TB patients and ensure their well-being, people nourishment, timely diagnosis and prompt treatment". "This will contribute immensely to our goal of TB-Free India by 2025", he stated.

Mandaviya also invited collaboration for the national initiative for clearing backlog of cataract surgery. He urged state ministers to popularise teleconsultation through e-Sanjeevani.

The Union minister requested state ministers to popularise and expedite implementation of ABHA- Ayushman Bharat Health Account in the states.

Mandaviya informed that this conference has provided sector-based targets for Union and State governments including those for TB-Free India and clearing backlogs of cataract surgeries, noting that "we need Jan Bhagidari for accomplishing health goals".

He also stated that a dedicated campaign would be started to undertake cataract operations from June 1.

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