- She said that the Sehat Sahulat Card holders would be able to avail free treatment services up to Rs. 720,000 from all empanelled hospitals across the country.
LAHORE: Punjab Health Minister Dr. Yasmin Rashid Monday announced that the provincial cabinet had formally approved the provision of Sehat Insaf Cards to all families across the province.
Speaking at a seminar on introduction of Typhoid Conjugate Vaccine by the Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department (P&SHD) held at a local hotel, she said that Sehat Sahulat Cards would be given to the Punjab’s all 29.3 million families registered with NADRA by December 2021.
"In the first phase, all seven districts of Sahiwal and Dera Ghazi Khan Divisions will be given cards," she added.
She said that the Sehat Sahulat Card holders would be able to avail free treatment services up to Rs. 720,000 from all empanelled hospitals across the country.
"It is the first time in the history that any government has started a program of free healthcare for the poor," she said.
She said that the Typhoid Vaccine campaign would be initially started from 12 districts including Lahore, Rawalpindi, Mianwali, Chakwal, Pakpattan, Multan, DG Khan, Layyah, Rajanpur, Mandi Bahauddin, Gujranwala and Faisalabad.
She congratulated the P&SHD on launching of the Typhoid Vaccination campaign, and said that Pakistan was the third country in the world which had started the campaign.
She thanked the World Health Organization (WHO), Unicef and other partners for the support and said that the government wanted to prevent children from this disease through the campaign. The minister said the department would set up camps and awareness centres during the campaign.
She said that improvement in healthcare service delivery according to the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan was the first priority of the Punjab government.
"The department was working with 50 per cent capacity when we took over," she said added that the PTI government had made record hiring of 32,000 doctors, nurses and paramedical staff to improve the performance of the Health department.
She said that Rs. 42 billion were being spent on procurement of medicines in the public sector hospitals.
"In the current fiscal year, an amount of Rs. 10 billion have been allocated for bio medical equipment," she informed.
She said that during COVID-19 Pandemic, Actemra injection worth Rs. 125,000 was used for patients under treatment at the government hospitals to save their lives.
"The government spent around Rs. 14 billion on the treatment of patients during the Pandemic," she said and added that the number of infected patients was much less in Punjab than other provinces.
Dr Yasmin said that in a short span of 9 months, as many as 20 BSL3 Labs had been set up and Secretary PSH Department Captain (Retd) Usman Younis played crucial role in the setting up of these labs.
She said that with the addition of 20 BSL3 Labs, the testing capacity of Punjab had reached 25,000 from 2000.
The minister said that Prime Minister Imran Khan had promised improvement in health and education sectors when he took over the charge.
She informed that for the first time in Punjab, nine new hospitals were being established.
"Mother and Child Hospital Ganga Ram, Nishter-2 Multan, Mother and Child Hospital Mianwali, Cardiology Hospital DG Khan are under construction," she added.
Dr Yasmin said that five more state of the art hospitals including Mother and Child Hospital Attock, Bahawalnagar, Rajanpur, Layyah and Sialkot were being set up.
She said that special emphasis was being laid on growth and health of children on the direction of the Prime Minister.
She thanked Education Minister Murad Raas for making the School Health & Nutrition Program a success.
Secretary PSH Department Captain (Retd) Captain Usman Younis during his address said, "I am thankful to the Allah Almighty on the start of historic campaign of typhoid vaccination."
He said that from February 1 to 15 around 20 million children of 9 months to 15 years would be vaccinated in the campaign.
He said the campaign was extremely important to save the children from Typhoid.
He expressed his gratitude to stakeholders, WHO, Unicef and other partners for their support.
Director General Health Services Punjab Dr Haroon Jehangir, representatives of WHO and Unicef were present in the seminar.