Centre gives over Rs.500 crore for alternate medicine

New Delhi, June 8 (IANS) The central government has given more than Rs.500 crore to various states for bringing AYUSH (ayurveda, yoga, unani, siddha and homeopathy) forms of medicine into the mainstream.

During 2009-13, Rs.553 crore was given to states and union territories for mainstreaming AYUSH under the National Rural Health Mission (NHRM).

This resulted in the establishment of new AYUSH facilities in 803 primary health centres, 113 community health centres, 24 district hospitals, upgradation of 379 exclusive AYUSH hospitals and 415 dispensaries in the country, Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said in Kolkata Saturday.

Azad said that mainstreaming AYUSH has been one of the important strategies envisaged under the NRHM.

He said since the launch of the NRHM in 2005, substantial progress has been achieved in the health sector.

Over 860,000 community health workers, called ASHAs, have been appointed in villages to facilitate interface between the communities and health system, he said.

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