Not even developed world offers universal health cover, says Khan
Prime Minister Imran Khan has inaugurated three projects to offer health cover, loans, and ration at discounted price to million of people in the country.
The Ehsaas ration programme will help 130 million people while under the Kamyab Pakistan project two million families will get business and house loans.
The PM said his government was going to offer universal health cover for the entire population, beginning with the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
The prime minister has also announced to reform the scholarship programmes in the country.
He addressed an event in Peshawar on Wednesday.
The prime minister said that health insurance was first launched in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, then he asked Punjab to follow the example, and now it will be followed in Balochistan as well.
Every family will get a health card with up to Rs1 million usage limit, the PM said adding that 7.5 million families in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will benefit from the programme.
The health insurance in Punjab will begin from January 2022.
The prime minister underscored that not even developed countries offered universal health cover. “In the developed world you need to pay to get an insurance,” he said.
Talking about inflation the PM said Pakistan imports oil and gas and several food items including ghee from other countries. “Still Pakistan is the least expensive country in the world,” he said.
But no doubt there is inflationary pressure and people are face problems, the PM admitted.
He said three months ago the government planned about Ehsaas ration programme for which it set aside Rs120 billion.
The prime minister said that under the Ehsaas ration programme half of the families in the country (around 130 million people) would be provided flour, ghee and pulses at 30% discount.
He said only the winter months were a difficult period for people and food prices would fall after that.
The PM instructed PTI leaders and workers to help families with less than Rs50,000 per month income to get registered for Ehsaas ration card.
The PM said the discount would be offered through retail stores that also need to register with the Ehsaas ration programme.
Imran Khan said another programme Kamyab Pakistan is being launched first in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and it will then be expanded to other provinces.
Under the programme, two million families would get four key benefits: a loan of Rs500,000 for business, technical education for one person of the family, another loan of up to Rs2.7 million for the construction of a house, and the health card.
The PM explained that the four benefits would be offered to each of the families covered by the Kamyab Pakistan programme.
Imran Khan said his government was offering a total of 6.3 million scholarships under various heads. The data on all these scholarships was being gathered by the PM Office which will ensure that scholarships are offered on merit and an online portal would be set up to allow candidates to contact the government, the PM said.
He said more money would be spent on education.
The prime minister said ten dams would be constructed in the next ten years.
He said this was the first time a government was planning for the long term.
Earlier, Barrister Mohammad Ali Saif, special assistant to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa chief minister on information and public relations, said that under a new Pakistan initiative welfare programmes such as Ehsaas Ration Card, Health Card, and Kisan Card would be launched.
“The initiative will bring Pakistan closer to becoming a welfare stated, which is the PM’s dream,” Saif said.
The premier was to meet the governor and chief minister of the province as well. They were to brief him on the political, economical situation in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The leaders will discuss the upcoming elections as well.