Voluntarily opt for remote area service, Virbhadra tells doctors

Sundernagar (Himachal Pradesh), Dec 7: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh Saturday asked the doctors to voluntarily opt for service in the remote areas of the state.

He was speaking at the inaugural function of the two-day-long 12th annual dental conference being organised by the state chapter of the Indian Dental Association here.

The chief minister said efforts were on to depute dental doctors up to the primary healthcare level.

“The government is committed to provide health infrastructure even in the remote areas so people of far-flung areas can avail basic healthcare facilities,” Virbhadra Singh said.

He said dental healthcare has been given equal importance and the government is strengthening the preventive side of dental care service by aligning the Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (Child Health Screening and Early Intervention Services) with the Oral Health Programme.

The chief minister said it was during his tenure the state’s first dental college started in Shimla in August 1994. He said it has been decided to construct a separate campus for the dental college near Ghanahati in Shimla district at a cost of Rs.150 crore.

Health Minister Kaul Singh said Rs.242 crore has been allocated for the health sector during this financial year, an increase of 24 percent over the previous year.

He said all children in government-run schools received yearly dental check-up through school health camps and this process was being expanded to all kids registered at “aanganwadi” centres.