Air clinic concept could be applied to J-K: minister

New Delhi, Aug 22 (PTI)

The ‘air clinic’ concept for north eastern states wherein doctors would be able to fly to remote areas to treat patients could be considered for other hilly states like Jammu and Kashmir, Union Minister Jitendra Singh today said.

Addressing the CII Health Conference here, the minister of state for Development of North Eastern Region Ministry (Independent Charge) referred to inaccessible areas in the north east and his proposal to introduce helicopter care service in the form of air clinics.

He said under such a concept, specialist doctors could fly to remote areas to hold OPD and on their way back carry some needy patients requiring hospitalisation.

“The same concept,” he said, “could also be applied to hill states like Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand”.

He said that Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region has released Rs 250 crore to execute the proposal.

Earlier this month, Manipur Governor Najma Heptulla had said that the ‘flying doctor’ proposal would help people of the hill areas of the state and its neighbours.

Singh, who holds the charge of minister of state in the Prime Minister Office (PMO), also called for establishing a Make in India” health module.

“This module can be based on public-private partnership as well as multi-centric healthcare collaboration to meet the changing health needs of 21st century India,” he said.

Singh cited the Northeast experience where he had motivated some of the country s leading corporate sector hospital groups to set up healthcare outlets of different magnitudes depending on the viability of the location, in the form of OPD clinics or diagnostic centres or even full fledged hospitals.