Rs 15000 Cr for States: FM Sitharaman

New Delhi, May 17
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Sunday said that the Government has taken a number of steps in the healthcare sector to battle the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Rs 15000 crore have been announced for States, essential items, testing labs and kits, along with rolling out of teleconsultation services, the launch of Aarogya Setu app and protection to health care workers with adequate PPEs,” Sitharaman announced in her final tranche on Rs 20 lakh crore stimulus package on Sunday.
The Finance Minister said that the Centre has released more than Rs 4,113 crore to States. Insurance cover of Rs 50 lakhs per person has been announced for healthcare workers.
“The Epidemic Diseases Act was amended for protection of healthcare workers,” she said.
Sitharaman said that health expenditure will be increased and investment at the grassroots level will be ramped up for health and wellness centres, with a particular focus on “aspirational districts”.
“All districts will have infectious diseases block in hospitals. Public health labs will be set up at block levels,” Sitharaman added.
Sitharaman on Sunday opened her address on the final tranche of the economic package by quoting Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
She said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his address earlier this week, has said that the coronavirus crisis has brought an opportunity to build a self-reliant India (Atmanirbhar Bharat).
“As a Nation today we stand at a very crucial juncture. Such a big disaster is a signal for India, it has brought a message and an opportunity,” Sitharaman quoted the Prime Minister.
She said that today’s announcements will be about 7 steps taken by the Govt - MGNREGA, health & education related steps, business & Covid-19, decriminalization of Companies Act, ease of doing business, public sector enterprises, State Govt resources.
Hindustan Times