MoH Unveils Ambitious Plan to Enhance Healthcare Services


The Ministry of Health (MoH), under the leadership of Lyonpo Tandin Wangchuk, has unveiled a comprehensive plan aimed at enhancing the healthcare system in the country. This ambitious initiative seeks to address various challenges in the health sector and pave the way for improved care and services.

The plan encompasses several key areas, including infrastructure development, healthcare workforce training, technological advancements, and the implementation of effective healthcare policies.

By focusing on these crucial aspects, the Ministry aims to ensure accessible, high-quality healthcare for all citizens.

This initiative demonstrates the government’s commitment to prioritizing the population’s well-being and creating a sustainable and efficient healthcare system.

The MoH has outlined key priorities and goals for improving the healthcare system in our country.

One of the main focuses is addressing the challenge of HR attrition in the health sector, particularly in tertiary health facilities like Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital (JDWNRH).

Additionally, the MoH is committed to the comprehensive implementation of the 13th Five-Year Plan (FYP), which aligns with major thematic areas of the health sector and is expected to bring significant health gains for the Bhutanese population.

 Another priority is the digitization of health services, rolling out electronic patient information systems (ePIS), and leveraging digital technology to enhance the quality of healthcare.

Lastly, the Minister aims to establish new partnerships with development partners to address the increasing healthcare costs and ensure the sustainable provision of quality healthcare services.

Health Minister, Lyonpo Tandin Wangchuk said, “My focus will be on implementing strategies to address the challenges faced by our healthcare infrastructure and services. One of the major challenges we face is the high attrition rate of the health workforce.”

To tackle this issue, Lyonpo said the ministry plans to work closely with the Khesar Gyalpo University of Medical Services of Bhutan (KGUMSB) to enhance student uptake in its faculties and make our MBBS program one of the best in the region. By ensuring that our program can produce the required number of doctors, we aim to become self-reliant in the shortest possible time.

Further, Lyonpo believes that implementing a robust performance management system, where the efforts and time of our health workers are truly recognized, will help in their retention.

The Minister also mentioned that he will conduct a comprehensive appraisal of the current performance management system to address the questions they are confronted with.

“I have a strong vision for promoting public health and disease prevention initiatives. In line with the 13th FYP, we aim to double the funding allocation to preventive care from 15 percent to 30 percent of total health expenditure.

“We believe in adopting a multi-sectoral and whole-of-government approach. We will collaborate with key stakeholders from both within and outside the government to strengthen disease prevention efforts.”

Lyonpo added, “We recognize the importance of behavioral change in adopting a healthy lifestyle. Therefore, we will work closely with district public health officials and local government leaders to strengthen social behavior change and communication efforts across all communities in the country. Together, we can make a positive impact on public health and disease prevention.”

Lyonpo also outlined several steps to ensure equitable access to healthcare services for all citizens, including those in remote and underserved areas.

 The first focus will be on strategically upgrading selected hospitals to the cluster hospital status, taking into consideration factors such as population, caseloads, road connectivity, and accessibility.

Additionally, there will be a strong emphasis on strengthening ambulance services and adopting digital solutions to bring healthcare services to far-flung communities.

To further address the needs of hard-to-reach areas, the ministry will plan and carry out outreach services and health camps, ensuring that vital health services reach every corner of the country. These initiatives aim to bridge the healthcare gap and ensure that all citizens have equal access to quality healthcare services.

To enhance the quality and affordability of healthcare in our country, the MoH has planned several policies and reforms. Continuous investment in capacity building of health workers and ensuring that health facilities have the necessary resources, such as human resources and medical supplies, are crucial for maintaining good quality care.

 In line with the 13th FYP, the ministry will also focus on strengthening the quality monitoring and management approaches. It is important to note that healthcare in our country is currently provided free of cost at the point of availing it, as mandated by the constitution, ensuring that affordability is not an issue for our citizens.

These measures aim to improve the overall healthcare system, ensuring that everyone can access quality care without financial burden.

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