Jaipur: In order to boost the primary health services and to review key health issues in World Health Organization’s South-East Asia Region, 11 Asian countries have expressed their desire to give thrust on the community health workers and volunteers.

Attending the 64th session of regional council of WHO at Jaipur, the Health Ministers and experts of South East Asia accepted that the trained Health Task Force is the backbone of the delivery of Primary Health care services.

The Ministers assured they will strengthen the functioning of the Health Department. Despite several eradication programmes run by the governments, communicable diseases like Malaria, Tuberculosis are yet to be fully controlled.  It is stark reality that the maternal and infant mortality rate are higher in the Asian countries, which are also vulnerable to the natural disasters.

On the occasion, Health Minister of Thailand said that there are 8 lakh Community Health workers in the country who impart training to the people and are also involved in health related programmes.

Giving further details, Health Minister of Indonesia said, “There are 26,682 Health Centres in the country, and we have volunteers who are assigned specific areas as work field.” He also laid stress on increasing the participation of volunteers in the health services.
All the delegates of the Asian countries focused on the need of imparting more training to the health volunteers.

Addressing the seminar, Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said “A pilot project has been prepared for the screening of the disease like hypertension and diabetes, which will start form Bhilwara in Rajasthan.”

The Centre’s flagship scheme National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) is to strengthen the healthcare delivery system with a focus on the needs of the poor and vulnerable sections among the rural population, he added.

One of the main tenets of the mission is to identify one ASHA (Accredited Social Health Activist) for per 1000 people in the rural areas with the purpose of supporting the community to access public health services. She is expected to create awareness on health and its determinants, mobilize the community towards local health planning, and increase utilization of the existing health services.