Social health services expanded

More diseases added to list

Highly encouraging news indeed that the government is expanding its social health services in order to provide financial assistance to patients afflicted with terminal diseases. The number of terminal diseases for which the government will provide financial assistance has been increased.

The services are now expected to benefit more people as the list of diseases has been expanded. Poor patients suffering from cancer, kidney, liver cirrhosis, paralysis, thalassemia and congenital heart diseases will be getting full assistance from the government.

Particularly, those who are marginalized and disadvantaged will be given priority when it comes to assistance from the government. Children, homeless people, elderly citizens, widows, refugees and others who are disadvantaged socially will receive support from the government service.

‘Support Service for Vulnerable Group’ project has been providing assistance to cancer, kidney, and cirrhosis-affected patients from 2009 to 2013 fiscal year. The support service is continuing at the country’s 94 hospitals in 492 upazilas. But now as more diseases have been added to the list, more people can avail this service.

For many poor people who do not have the ability to carry out their treatment this service might save their lives. The service should be expanded to more hospitals and more locations across the country so that no one is deprived of proper treatment.

Particularly, those who are marginalized

 and disadvantaged will be given priority

 when it comes to assistance

 from the government

The government’s initiative to ensure healthcare for all is truly commendable. Access to healthcare is one of the most important and indicative markers of a society’s progress. We cannot call ourselves a developed nation until each and every citizen, irrespective of their financial and social status is able to receive proper treatment for their ailments.

The government should now work to make the application process for these services easier. Assistance centers should be set up at district and upazila level as well to ensure that people from the most remote areas are able to access the government’s service.