Govt- pvt sector collaboration a must for dev of caregivers: Dipu Moni

Published : 02 Apr 2024 09:49 PM

Social Welfare Minister Dr Dipu Moni stressed the need for collaborative efforts from both the government and private entities to improve the country’s caregiver sector. 

“Nurses, ward boys and housemaids are playing a key role both locally and internationally in providing service for the patients, elderly people and people with disabilities,” she said while speaking as the chief guest at a discussion on Monday in the capital. 

The caregivers were neglected during the past BNP-Jamaat regime, the present government has taken initiatives to ensure equal opportunities, particularly for women in the service sector, she added.

Social Welfare Minister Dr Dipu Moni was speaking as chief guest a round table discussion titled ‘Developing Strategies Roadmap for the Care Economy in Bangladesh’ organized by Ayat Care at a city hotel in the capital. 

“Policy support from the government plays a crucial role in any fields of development, however, active participation of the private sector is equally essential in driving the caregiver sector growth,” Dipu Moni said.  

She also laid emphasis on policy formulation, standardisation and institutional support to promote gender equality in the sector, saying that the government cannot do anything alone.

Speaking at the discussion, experts from different sectors have highlighted the urgency of collaborative efforts in promoting the caregivers. They also underscored the importance of recognising caregivers’ contributions.

When caregiving is emerging as a substantial market, experts said as the country increasingly exports caregivers abroad, there is a pressing need for improving their standard by providing adequate support for their professional development.

However, experts pointed out the challenges, including lack of comprehensive data on the number of paid caregivers and absence of a clear policy framework for the sector. 

They also put importance on the necessity for capacity building, emphasizing basic knowledge in areas such as nutrition and hygiene for caregivers. They have also opined that international collaboration is also essential for removing reducing knowledge gaps and enhancing caregivers’ skills in patient care and communication. 

According to Ayat Care, Bangladesh braces for a demographic shift with a growing aging population and the demand for skilled caregivers is expected to rise. It is imperative for the government, private sector, and international partners to work together to empower caregivers, ensuring quality care for individuals and, communities.

Chief Executive Officer of AYAT Education Nusrat Aman presided over the meeting while European Union (EU) head of delegation Ambassador Charles Whiteley, Country Director of Save the Children Shumon Sengupta, ⁠Country Director of ActionAid Bangladesh Farah Kabir, Coordination and Partnerships Analyst of UN Women Syeda Samara Mortada, among others, spoke at the discussion.