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Sunday, April 11, 2021

New initiative: Mahila mohalla clinics across Delhi

Calling it a “revolutionary movement”, Finance Minister Manish Sisodia said that 100 such clinics will be set up in the first phase.

Written by Astha Saxena | New Delhi |
March 10, 2021 1:16:48 am
The ‘mahila mohalla clinics’, which will function along the lines of Aam Aadmi Mohalla Clinics, will offer free gynaecological and other medical services . (Express archive)

Special mohalla clinics for women will be set up in the next financial year, the Delhi government said Tuesday. The ‘mahila mohalla clinics’, which will function along the lines of Aam Aadmi Mohalla Clinics, will offer free gynaecological and other medical services to women within walking distance from their homes.

Calling it a “revolutionary movement”, Finance Minister Manish Sisodia said that 100 such clinics will be set up in the first phase. Delhi is the first city to introduce the concept of mohalla clinics or neighbourhood health centres, meant to provide affordable healthcare facilities. There are 496 mohalla clinics operational in the city and the government plans to increase the number to 1,000.

“The Delhi government will now undertake the responsibility of having a ‘mahila mohalla clinic’ around every woman in Delhi and services of gynaecologist and related diagnostic tests will be made available for free. In the first phase, 100 are proposed to be established in different parts of Delhi, which will be progressively increased to at least one clinic in each ward,” Sisodia said.

The government has allocated Rs 9,934 crore to the healthcare sector in the annual budget for 2021-2022 which was presented Tuesday. This accounts for 14% of the total budget.

“We all know that our mothers and sisters are not able to talk to us about their health issues openly. A woman from the middle class might find herself a specialist. But in the middle class and lower-income families, she fails to reach a gynaecologist. It is a fact of our society that women tend to neglect their own illnesses. The result of this is that many women live with an ailment, assuming it as destiny,” he said.

Learning from the Covid experience, the Delhi government has allocated Rs 1,293 crore for various projects for expansion of health-related infrastructure. After the completion and redesigning of new hospitals, the number of hospital beds will increase by more than 14,000.

In another patient-friendly move, the government has proposed Rs 50 crore for the ‘Aam Aadmi Free Covid Vaccine’ scheme, under which the vaccine will be made available to people of Delhi free of cost in government hospitals.

“The vaccine will be available in the market for Rs 250, but we have families in Delhi who would have to choose either to buy a full month’s ration for their family or pay for vaccination from their monthly salary. For this, we have introduced this new scheme in which no patient will have to pay any amount while getting vaccinated for Covid at a government hospital in Delhi,” he said.

At present, the city has the capacity to vaccinate 45,000 persons daily, which will be increased to 60,000 persons per day in the next few days.

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