The State Level Workshop on “Health for All – Equal Access for Good Quality Health Services” was held at the Bihar Voluntary Health Association (BVHA) in Patna on July 15, 2023. The inaugural session of the 55th Annual General Body Meeting (AGBM) commenced with a warm welcome speech by the President of BVHA, Shri Raghupati Singh. He expressed his heartfelt gratitude to all the participants for their attendance and extended special thanks to the esteemed Chief Guest, Dr. R.C.S Verma, Director-in-Chief, Health Services, Government of Bihar, and Guest of Honor, Dr. N.K. Gupta, Additional Project Director, BSACS, Bihar, for their valuable presence.
Shri Raghupati Singh also acknowledged the contributions of other dignitaries, including Md. Sadat Noor, State Head, Piramal Foundation, Bihar; Dr. Kailash Kumar, Senior Regional Director, Health & Family Welfare, GOI, Bihar; Dr. B. K. Mishra, State T.B. Officer, Government of Bihar; Dr. Tarique from UNICEF; Dr. Ojha, Former Regional Deputy Director, Health, Government of Bihar; Dr. Madhumita Mukherjee, Retired Prof. PMCH; and various other network partners, media representatives, and governing board members of BVHA.
The inaugural session commenced with the traditional lighting of the lamp by the esteemed delegates.
- Mr. Swapan Mazumder, Executive Director, BVHA: Mr. Mazumder emphasized that health is not just the absence of disease but also encompasses physical, mental, and social well-being. He highlighted the existing gaps in Bihar’s healthcare system and the need to align with the National Health Policy 2017 and National Health Mission 2013. He underscored the importance of universal access to quality healthcare without financial hardship and called for improving healthcare delivery, increasing access, and lowering costs.
- Dr. Tarique, UNICEF Bihar: Dr. Tarique presented a comprehensive community health intervention plan focused on reducing maternal and child mortality rates. This plan involved training ASHA and ANM workers to identify early complications during pregnancy, motivate couples for healthy practices, offer counseling, promote hygiene, ensure immunization, and support child development until 15 months of age. The goal is to reduce mortality rates through early identification, referrals, and essential health practices.
- Md. Sadat Noor, State Head, Piramal Foundation, Bihar: Mr. Noor discussed Piramal Foundation’s initiatives to improve healthcare quality through innovative technology, digitalization, and strengthening systems. He stressed the importance of awareness about lifestyle changes and early detection and treatment of non-communicable diseases, especially cancer.
- Dr. Madhumita Mukherjee, Retired Prof. P.M.C.H, Patna: Dr. Mukherjee’s presentation focused on health inequalities and the social determinants of health. She highlighted the systemic differences in health status and resources among population groups due to social conditions. Health equity, she explained, means providing everyone with a fair opportunity to attain their highest level of health.
- Dr. N.K. Gupta, Additional Project Director, BSACS: Dr. Gupta discussed HIV/AIDS transmission and the importance of preventive measures. He addressed the stigma and discrimination associated with HIV, emphasizing the negative impact on individuals and the need for a supportive environment.
- Dr. Kailash Kumar, Senior Regional Director, Health, and Family Welfare, GOI: Dr. Kumar highlighted the National Rural Health Mission’s efforts to extend healthcare services to remote areas despite infrastructure challenges. He stressed the importance of reaching the grassroots population and providing three-tier medical services in urban and rural areas.
- Dr. R.C.S Verma, Director-in-chief, Health Services, Government of Bihar: Dr. Verma expressed gratitude for being part of the workshop and discussed the challenges faced by the healthcare sector in Bihar, especially during disasters and pandemics. He mentioned the adoption of telemedicine to provide healthcare services to rural populations.
The President of BVHA, Shri Raghupati Singh, presented shawls and mementos to the dignitaries as tokens of appreciation. The session concluded with a vote of thanks by the Secretary, Shri Kaushal Kishore Vikal, who expressed gratitude to all attendees and highlighted the vital role of BVHA in improving healthcare in Bihar.
The workshop provided valuable insights into the healthcare challenges and initiatives in Bihar, fostering collaboration and dialogue among stakeholders committed to achieving “Health for All” with equal access to good quality health services.