Healthcare services are being decentralized: Maleque

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Dhaka, Feb 10: Health and Family Welfare Minister Zahid Maleque on Thursday said the government is taking prompt measures to decentralize healthcare services across the country aiming to reach better treatment facilities to doorsteps of the people.

“As part of decentralization process of healthcare services, construction works of eight high-standard hospitals at eight divisions are underway,” he told a discussion at National Institute of Cancer Research & Hospital (NICRH) marking the World Cancer Day-2022, an official release said.

The health minister said modern treatment facilities for Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) including cancer, kidney, hypertension and diabetes will be made available at these hospitals.

Additional Director General (Administration) Prof Dr Ahmedul Kabir, directors of different hospitals and physicians, among others, were present at the discussion with Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS)

NICRH Director Prof Dr Swapan Kumar Bandapadya in the chair.

Maleque said, “Non-Communicable Diseases are responsible for 67 percent deaths in the country…. Out-of-pocket expenditure has increased significantly in the country as a large segment of people are suffering from non-communicable diseases.”

The health minister said people are bearing huge amount of money as they are suffering from non-communicable diseases such as kidney, heart, diabetes and liver. Many people are becoming poor due to non-communicable diseases, he added.

Maleque said after setting up these high-standard hospitals at the eight divisions, the people with NCDs will get treatment at lower cost from these hospitals.

The minister said, “There are 2 million cancer patients in the country… roughly 1.5 lakh people are being killed due to cancer disease.”

Other health experts attributed polluted environment, food adulteration and unhealthy lifestyle for alarmingly rise of cancer patients in Bangladesh.

They laid emphasis on the health concept of prevention is better than cure as fatality rate of cancer patients are very high in case of delayed diagnosis of the killer disease.