Vice President calls for renewed focus on rural health care;
Suggests mandatory rural service of 3 years for Doctors before their first promotion;
Cautions that the quality of healthcare being delivered cannot be determined by the price being paid;
Applauds PIMS-DU for delivering quality, affordable healthcare in rural and tribal areas;
Delivers 13th Convocation address of PIMS-DU and presents Degrees to Graduates
The Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu has called for a renewed focus on rural health care and cautioned that the quality of healthcare being delivered cannot be determined by the price being paid. He was delivering the 13th Convocation Address of Pravara Institute of Medical Sciences, a Deemed University (PIMS-DU), in Loni, Maharashtra today.
Shri Naidu congratulated the 437 graduates who were being presented degrees and applauded their parents for supporting & trusting their wards, empowering them to fully explore their talents & creativity. He also expressed delight that a large number of graduates who won awards and medals for excellence were women. ‘There is no tool for development more effective than women empowerment’, he said.
The Vice President appreciated PIMS-DU for striving to provide quality education & training to the health professionals of the nation. He said that it was rendering valuable service by meeting the healthcare needs of the rural & tribal populace at a time when India is aspiring to have more qualified doctors, nurses and therapists serving in rural areas. He suggested a mandatory rural service for doctors for 3 years.
Shri Naidu lauded Padmabhushan late Dr. Balasaheb Vikhe Patil for his efforts towards setting up Pravara and for his contributions to rural healthcare.
Opining that the youth of India would determine its future, the Vice President quoted United Nations Population Fund’s report which said that the window of demographic dividend opportunity in India would be available for 5 decades from 2005-06 to 2055-56, longer than any other country in the world.
The Vice President observed that the immense demographic advantage could create the space needed to increase investments in enhancing human capabilities, which, in turn, would have a positive influence on growth and development in the time to come. He emphasized upon providing quality higher education, especially professional and technical education as an imperative to empower the youth to play a meaningful role in nation building.
Outlining some of the major challenges faced by healthcare sector such as the epidemiological transition being witnessed by India from communicable to non-communicable diseases, unequal access to healthcare and rising costs, Shri Naidu said that a lot more needs to be done to ensure health security to our vast population.
The Vice President observed that urban areas had four times as many medical practitioners compared to rural areas, and said that this rural urban divide had to be addressed on war footing. He said that ‘Ram Rajya’ cannot be achieved without attaining ‘Gram Rajya’. He added that rural development was a cause close to his heart.
Highlighting the importance of technology, the Vice President said that with technology, it was possible to reach millions of people across the country, providing better diagnosis and treatment by facilitating effective collaboration between healthcare workers.
Expressing concern over the rising costs of providing medical services, Shri Naidu opined that the integration of technological innovation with healthcare delivery will certainly help in lower healthcare delivery costs. He urged all educational institutions to invest a sizeable portion of their budget in research and development for the discovery and advancement of new technologies.
Terming medical profession as a ‘mission’, Shri Naidu said that healthcare practitioners would play a critical role in nation building by safeguard the health of this nation, enabling it for it to take its rightful place of leadership in the world. ‘Only a healthy nation cab be a wealthy nation’, he added.
Shri Naidu urged all the young doctors and budding healthcare professionals to treat all their patients, both rich and poor, with the same commitment, investment, respect and integrity.
Reminding everyone of the lofty notion of “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” that is engrained in the very DNA of Indian civilization, the Vice President implored the youngsters to let the ideal act as a beacon during testing times. ‘Nurture the values of nationalism, patriotism, honesty, peace, compassion, respect, harmony and co-existence’, he added.
The Vice President called upon the students to dedicate themselves to the service of mankind, mitigate hunger, poverty, ignorance and blind beliefs. ‘Today, you have made your University proud. It is time to go forth and make your nation proud’, he told them.
Pointing out that the word ‘Pravara’ meant ‘Excellence’ and ‘Eminence’, he urged the students to keep this grand tradition of ‘Pravara’ alive and blazing through their noble words and deeds.
The Governor of Maharashtra & the Chancellor of PIMS-DU, Shri C. Vidyasagar Rao, the Pro-Chancellor of PIMS-DU, Shri Vijay Kelkar, the recipient of Honorary Degree, Shri Ashok Panagariya and other dignitaries were present on the occasion.
Following is the text of Vice President’s address:
“I am delighted to be amongst you to deliver the 13th Convocation Address of Pravara Institute of Medical Sciences – Deemed to be University, which is the brain child of Padmabhushan late Dr. Balasaheb Vikhe Patil – a true son of the soil.
I have had a 25 year of long association with Dr. Balasaheb Vikhe Patil. He was a valued colleague in the Parliament.
Although we belonged to two different political parties at that time, we always found converging areas of interest, especially in the field of rural development, a quest that is close to my heart.
He was much admired for his simple living and his commitment to undertaking developmental projects at the grassroots level.
Dr. Balasaheb Vikhe Patil is the proud son of late Dr. Vitthalrao Vikhe Patil, a legendary figure in the history of co-operative enterprise in the country. He pioneered the use of co-operative movement as a tool for social, educational and economic uplifting of the rural masses.
At the outset, I would like to congratulate Dr. Ashok Panagariya, who has been recognized by this University for his services to the nation in the field of Neurology and Medical Sciences by conferring an Honorary Doctorate upon him.
I understand that PIMS-DU offers Graduate, Post Graduate, PG Diploma, Diploma & Ph.D programmes under the faculty of Medicine, Dentistry, Nursing & Allied health Sciences.
It is truly heartening to note that as many as 437 graduates are being presented with their degrees in this convocation here today.
My heartiest congratulations to all of them for their achievements.
My sincere appreciation to the parents for supporting and trusting their children, thus empowering them to fully explore their talents and creativity.
I am glad to note that PIMS-DU is striving to provide quality education and training to the health professionals of the nation. On the other hand, through its multispecialty tertiary hospital and its specialist doctors, nurses and technicians, PIMS-DU is providing tertiary health care to the rural population.
I applaud PIMS-DU for extending their health care and research to tribal areas also.
As India aspires to have more qualified doctors, nurses and therapists serving in rural areas, the PIMS-DU is rendering valuable service by meeting the healthcare needs of the rural populace.
I appreciate the Loni PURA Model of PIMS-DU. Though rural in location, it is truly urban in terms of its facilities and amenities.
It is indeed a unique model of excellence.
I congratulate the visionary leaders Dr. Vitthalrao Vikhe Patil, Padmashri Awardee and Dr. Balasaheb Vikhe Patil, Padmabhushan Awardee for their foresight and missionary zeal.
My dear young friends,
I strongly believe that it is the youth of a nation that will determine its future.
As you are all aware, India has a burgeoning youth population. United Nations Population Fund estimates that the window of demographic dividend opportunity in India is available for five decades from 2005-06 to 2055-56, longer than any other country in the world.
Demographic dividend is said to be occurring when the ratio of the working age population is high and the dependency ratio in terms of proportion of children and elderly people low.
The working age group 15-59 years accounts for 62.5% of India’s population.
This immense advantage can create the space needed to increase investments in enhancing human capabilities, which, in turn, can have a positive influence on growth and development in the time to come.
Thrust on quality Higher education, especially professional and technical education is imperative to empower the youth so that they can play a meaningful role in nation building.
I am extremely glad to know that this University is setting new benchmarks in excellence through its commitment to advancing meaningful teaching & learning, promoting need-based research, amplifying community engagement, and accelerating internationalization, all the while, serving the poor and the needy.
Dear Sisters and brothers,
In any student’s life, convocation is a crucial ceremony. It marks the completion of an important phase of life and symbolizes the beginning of the next significant phase.
Attainment of a degree is only a milestone and not an end in itself.
I am sure you all will take up the mantle for serving the nation selflessly.
Emphasis must be placed on continuous learning and updating of the existing knowledge base.
The world of Science and Technology is undergoing rapid transformation and I urge each and every one of you to be poised to absorb and utilize these innovations for the greater good.
Let me tell you that the future belongs to brilliant innovators and leaders whose priority is to serve the masses selflessly.
The career path you have chosen is rife with a number of challenges today.
It is true that we have achieved a number of significant milestones in the health sector since independence.
Life expectancy at birth has increased, infant mortality and crude death rates have been greatly reduced, diseases such as Small Pox and Polio have been eradicated, and Leprosy has been nearly eliminated.
Yet, a lot more needs to be done to ensure health security to our vast population.
India is undergoing an epidemiological transition today. The burden of non communicable, lifestyle diseases is on the rise, dominating over communicable diseases in the total disease burden of the country.
India also faces challenges of unequal access and rising costs in healthcare.
There is also low health insurance penetration, leaving a large section of the population to incur out of pocket health expenditure, pushing many families to poverty.
There is also a great rural-urban divide when it comes to healthcare.
Urban areas have four times as many medical practitioners compared to rural areas, making rural India grossly underserved. The quality of medical education of also varies between rural and urban centers.
Our Primary Health Centers which are the first point of contact for patients are face funding issues and infrastructural lacunae.
Universal Health Coverage (UHC) is the need of the hour.
UHC can resolve a number of issues we face in the health sector by standardizing healthcare infrastructure and providing value-based medicine.
Always remember that the healthcare sector represents a huge opportunity to leverage technology to improve critical processes that would aid the delivery of quality healthcare.
With technology, it is possible to reach millions of people who are geographically spread across the country, providing better and more accurate diagnosis, managing treatment and facilitating effective collaboration and dialogue between doctors and healthcare workers.
The cost of providing medical services has also been rising steadily. The integration of technological innovation with healthcare delivery will enable scale and lower healthcare delivery costs.
I urge all educational institutions to invest a sizeable portion of their budget in research and development for the discovery and advancement of new technologies.
My dear young friends who are earning coveted degrees today,
Let me remind you that the profession you have chosen is a mission.
You will play a critical role in nation building.
I have said time and again that only a healthy nation is capable of being a wealthy nation.
It is upto you to safeguard the health of this nation, enabling it for it to take its rightful place of leadership in the world.
It is truly unfortunate that the quality of healthcare delivered in this country is very often determined by the price that is being paid.
Today, I urge all the young doctors and budding healthcare professionals present here to treat all your patients, both rich and poor, with the same commitment, investment, respect and integrity.
In your able hands lie the power to transform lives.
Use your talents wisely and well.
Serve the nation with a passion and missionary zeal. Adopt the “kaizan” or the principle of continuous improvement to excel in all walks of life.
Further, nurture the values of nationalism, patriotism, honesty, peace, compassion, respect, harmony and co-existence.
The lofty notion of “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” is engrained in the very DNA of our civilization.
Let this ideal act as a beacon to you during testing times.
I am glad to know that Pravara Medical Trust was established in 1976 as a 100 bed hospital to serve the poverty stricken people of this drought and epidemic prone region.
It is indeed very heartening to know that today it has become a 1275 bedded hospital, offering super specialty services to the rural people of this district and neighboring districts at a very reasonable cost.
I am told that this trust has also been providing free medical facilities to all the children below 12 years of age and to senior citizens.
I am also really impressed by the community engagement of this university including the adoption of more than 400 rural and tribal villages for the provision of health services.
I congratulate the faculty and students of this university for being true “change agents”.
I am also delighted to know that this Rural University has strong international engagement with over 31 active academic, research and medical care collaborations with Foreign Universities, Research and Development Organizations across the globe.
I call upon my young friends to dedicate themselves to the service of mankind, mitigate hunger, poverty, ignorance and blind beliefs.
Today, you have made your University proud.
It is time to go forth and make your nation proud.
The word ‘Pravara’ means ‘excellence’ and ‘eminence’. It is a word used to describe distinction and achievement.
I hope that all students passing out of the portals of this institution will, through their noble deeds, keep this grand tradition of ‘Pravara’ alive and blazing.
I congratulate the university, the faculty, the students and parents once again and wish them all the very best in their future endeavors.