Those planning Islamabad ‘circus’ pursuing personal agenda: minister

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RAHIM YAR KHAN, Oct 21 (APP): Minister for National Health Services and Coordination Saira Afzal Tarar said on Friday that those planning political ‘circus’ at Islamabad were actually pursuing their personal agenda at the cost of national development process.

The minister was speaking at a ceremony here after the launch of national health card scheme by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Rahim Yar Khan became the first district of Punjab where this
unique facility was launched under Prime Minister’s National Health Programme.

The minister said that the free treatment facility of international standard would be introduced all over the country soon. She said that the incumbent government was fulfilling all the promises it had made with the public during the election campaign. She said that the PML-N government was especially focusing on health and education sectors.

Some people were pursuing personal agenda and risking the interests of the country, Saira Afzal Tarar said adding that they were creating hurdles to the process of Pakistan’s development.

She said tht the PML-N opponents were going to stage a ‘circus’ at Islamabad but “I believe that politics is the name of serving the people”. The opponents believe that they can hold the government hostage through such tactics but they are mistaken, she added.

She disclosed that the government would also extend loans to private hospitals to upgrade their infrastructure to enable them provide free treatment facilities to the poor health card-holders.

Initially, they would get health assistance worth Rs 300,000; however, in case the cost exceeds the limit, Pakistan Bait-ul-Maal, would cover the rest of the expenses and a memorandum of understanding (MoU) has already been signed in this connection.

She said that the health card programme would improve health indicators and reduce mortality rate in child birth cases besides improving immunisation of the newly born babies.

To ensure transparency, the programme was being monitored at different tiers, she said.

She said that National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) would contact the patients holding the health cards to know if they were being provided medical facilities free of cost.

She said that the national health programme was being run jointly by the federal and provincial governments and added that the provinces which have not yet joined the programme should do so for the wellbeing of their people.

She said that those who earn Rs 200 per day or less were eligible to join the programme. She said that so far 150,000 poor people have been enroled in Rahim Yar Khan and a total of 525,000 people would benefit from it in the district.

She said that people facing problems regarding transportation of  patients would also be provided transport facility as transport allowance was part of the programme.

She said that it was a unique programme launched for the first time ever by any government and added that she, along with Maryam Nawaz Sharif, worked hard for the launch of the programme.

She said that during her recent visits to three Arab countries, their leadership admired Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. She said that Pakistan’s stature has been elevated under the leadership of Nawaz Sharif.