Budget 2024-25: Punjab raises health budget by 24pc

Published June 14, 2024
Torn budget copies litter the floor of the Punjab Assembly after the session on Thursday. — White Star / M. Arif
Torn budget copies litter the floor of the Punjab Assembly after the session on Thursday. — White Star / M. Arif

LAHORE: The Punjab government has earmarked Rs539.1bn for the health sector for the financial year 2024-25 with a 24pc increase compared to the last budget.

A major chunk of the total budget – Rs55bn – has been allocated for provision of free medicines to the poor and deserving patients in the outpatient departments (OPDs) of the public hospitals and Rs54bn for the Universal Health Coverage under the health insurance programme in the province.

Of Rs539.1bn, Rs410.5bn has been proposed for the non-development with 15pc increase and Rs128.6bn for the health sector development schemes, making an increase of 15pc than the previous annual budget.

The government has allocated Rs42.6bn under the head of development schemes for the primary and secondary healthcare sector, 54pc more than the last budgetary allocations.

Rs109bn allocated for free medicines and health insurance

It has allocated Rs16bn under the head of the revamp programmes Phase-I and Rs7.5bn for the Phase-II.

Similarly, Rs86bn have been proposed for the development schemes for the specialized healthcare and medical education department.

According to documents, an amount of Rs13.3bn has been earmarked under the head of the ongoing schemes while Rs6.2bn for the new schemes of all the government teaching institutes of Punjab for the financial year 2024-25.

For the Pakistan Kidney & Liver Institute (PKLI), the provincial government has proposed Rs1bn.

It has allocated Rs4bn each for the revamp of 581 basic health units of south Punjab and 552 of north and central Punjab.

The documents say Rs500m have been earmarked for the Integrated, Reproductive Maternal Newborn and Child Health.

The government allocated Rs317m for strengthening of the provincial TB programme, Rs1.8bn for Punjab family planning scheme, Rs2.7bn for National Health Support Programme, Rs7.3bn for preventive healthcare, Rs1bn for research and development and Rs500m for the Screening Children for Disease scheme.

The Punjab government has also made special allocations of Rs6bn for establishment of Nawaz Sharif Institute of Cancer Treatment and Research Lahore and Rs1bn for Nawaz Sharif Institute of Cardiology Sargodha.

It has also made an allocation of Rs200m for establishment of 100-bed Mother & Child Hospital Murree, Rs1.5bn for construction of Emergency and Trauma Centre at the Jinnah Hospital Lahore.

The government has proposed Rs1.3bn for reconstruction of the Lady Willingdon Hospital Lahore, Rs801m for the revamp of the Services Hospital Lahore.

Published in Dawn, June 14th, 2024

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