As part of the Union Government’s efforts to combat cancer, 71 cancer institutes would be started across the country to provide chemotherapy, radiotherapy and onco-surgery. A National Cancer Institute would also be set up at the second campus of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences at Jhajjar in Haryana.
“In a single Cabinet decision, we have sanctioned 71 institutes for which an amount of `5,200 crore have been sanctioned. There will be 20 regional institutes and 50 tertiary institutes. The Chittaranjan National Cancer Institute in Kolkata will be expanded with a second campus at a cost of `400 crore,” said Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad on Wednesday. He was speaking at the 18th convocation of the NIMHANS.
On the Mental Health Care Bill 2013, which would be tabled in the current session of Parliament, Azad said, “The Bill has many progressive features and seeks to institute far-reaching measures to protect the rights of people with mental illnesses. I am confident that the Bill, which was approved by the Union Cabinet on January 30, will be passed in this session of Parliament with some amendments.”
Azad praised the NIMHANS for starting a pilot project that would be the first step towards a National Mental Health Survey based on representative data from all states. “We hope to complete the survey within the coming financial year,” said vice-chancellor Prof P Satishchandra.
Biocon chairperson Kiran Mazumdar Shaw asked for greater assistance from the government in creating a conducive environment for clinical trials.