Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad Saturday announced two new medical colleges, two trauma centres and a burn centre in Himachal Pradesh.
The minister was here to lay the foundation stone of the 100-bedded mother-child block at the zonal hospital compound. It will be constructed at a cost of Rs.17 crore.
Azad also inaugurated a super-specialty hospital block set up at a cost of Rs.150 crore at the Dr. Rajendra Prasad Government Medical College in Tanda town through video conferencing.
According to official sources, the minister couldn't fly to Tanda in Kangra district from here owing to bad weather.
Addressing a gathering here, he said the Indian government has doubled the budget allocation in health sector for the states of Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh.
Azad announced to set up two trauma centres and a burn centre at the Indira Gandhi Medical College and Hospital (IGMCH) in Shimla.
"I want to see Himachal emerging as a model state in every sphere of development, especially in the health sector in the next four years," he said.
He said six health institutions equivalent to the All-India Medical Sciences (AIIMS) have been developed in the country, of which Tanda is one.
A similar super-specialty hospital worth Rs.150 crore would be developed in Shimla.
"This will give relief to the people of the state who otherwise had to rush to the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) Chandigarh or AIIMS Delhi for specialised treatment," he added.
He said two cancer institutes would be set up in Shimla and Mandi, besides a financial aid of Rs.190 crore each would be provided to open two medical colleges in Chamba and Nahan towns.
Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh thanked Azad for providing liberal assistance to the state for strengthening the health infrastructure.
"I always wanted to see Tanda medical hospital and college to become a prestigious health institute of the country along with the IGMCH in Shimla and I can foresee that my dream project is being transformed into reality," he said.
The chief minister said with the starting of super-specialty block at Tanda the people of adjoining districts of Kangra, Chamba, Mandi, Hamirpur and Una will get better treatment at affordable rates.
State Health Minister Kaul Singh Thakur said Rs.45 crore each would be spent to establish two cancer hospitals at Mandi and Shimla towns.
Transport Minister G.S. Bali, while interacting with the union minister through video conferencing, requested him to increase the MBBS seats from 100 to 150 at the IGMCH and Dr. Rajendra Prasad Government Medical College.