KRISHNAGIRI: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin on Thursday launched the ‘Makkalai Thedi Maruthuvam’ (healthcare at your doorstep), a first-of-its-kind initiative, at Samanapalli village in Krishnagiri. The scheme aims to tackle non-communicable diseases in the state and ensure that health services are delivered at the doorsteps of beneficiaries.
The scheme will cover 1,172 health sub centres, 189 primary health centres and 50 community health centres in 50 universal health coverage blocks across the state. In addition, this scheme will also be implemented in one zone in three corporations (Tirunelveli, Coimbatore and Greater Chennai Corporation), covering 106 sectors and 21 urban primary health centres. The scheme will further be upscaled to cover the entire state by the end of 2021.
The scheme is being implemented at a tentative annual cost of Rs 257.16 crores, which includes Rs 195.70 crore for rural areas and Rs 61.46 crore for urban areas, according to the GO issued by the Tamil Nadu government.
Speaking at the event, Chief Minister MK Stalin said, "This project will benefit people who are above 45 years and in vulnerable categories with blood pressure and diabetes who will get healthcare facilities at their doorsteps. Through this, congenital disorders and jaundice will be identified earlier. Apart from this, dialysis and psychotherapy will be provided at doorsteps and medicines will be given to people identified with diabetes and other issues."
Stalin added, "Funds were allotted for this project and it was launched to achieve the vision for the next ten years to provide healthcare for all. This has been implemented in eight districts in the first phase namely Krishnagiri, Madurai, Coimbatore, Salem, Thanjavur, Trichy, Tirunelveli and Chennai and it will be extended to other districts later. Similarly, one crore people in 30 lakh families in the state will get benefits by the end of this year."
He further said 1,264 women health volunteers, 50 physiotherapists and 50 palliative care staff were initially assigned for the implementation of this scheme.
He praised the health department staff for their selfless work and dedication during the pandemic.
On the sidelines of the event, Stalin and Health Minister Ma Subramanian told reporters that vacancies in the health department will be filled soon and around 25,000 health department staff, women health volunteers, village health nurses and others will be engaged for this scheme. Issues in distributing nutritional kits to postnatal mothers will be resolved soon.
When asked about the number of quacks and high teenage pregnancy in tribal areas, the CM replied that awareness programmes will be conducted and this scheme will reduce quacks.
Following the inauguration, he distributed a medicine kit to a beneficiary at Samanapalli village in Shoolagiri block. He also inaugurated a vaccination programme for one lakh labourers through video conferencing.
As part of the event, he flagged off three vehicles to be used under the new scheme, distributed benefits like prosthetic legs costing around Rs 2 lakh each to two beneficiaries of Bettamugilalam and Doddamanju panchayat and handed over a key exclusively to use the new '108' ambulance service for Bettamugilalam panchayat.
Health Secretary Dr J Radhakrishnan, Mission Director of National Health Mission Darez Ahamed and other officials took part in the programme.