Prime Minister J.Erdenebat and Head of the Cabinet Secretariat J.Munkhbat met with representatives of the health sector last week to discuss state policy on the health sector and financing, as the Cabinet is developing its 2016 to 2020 action plan.
The meeting was attended by the authorities of health centers, NGOs working in healthcare, universities, research institutes, private hospitals, as well as former authorities of state hospitals. They discussed the issues facing the health sector and offered some policy proposals.
Beginning the meeting, J.Munkhbat said, “In the scope of developing the 2016-2020 action plan of the Cabinet, the ministers have held meetings with the education, agriculture, and light industry sectors. Cabinet will hear suggestions from all the sectors and will include their suggestions in the action plan. Public health is the most essential issue for the state and government,” and added that Cabinet’s action plan will include suggestions and proposals from the health sector representatives.
“We have enough documents for programs, plans, targets, and objectives. Unfortunately, these documents haven’t worked. No one is doing anything to implement these papers rather than developing them. My Cabinet will only discuss and speak about the projects we will do. We will take relevant measures if someone does not complete what he or she was assigned and supposed to do. This policy is being applied to all sectors equally. We are putting such demands on Cabinet members as well,” J.Erdenebat said during the three-hour meeting.
During the meeting, many people suggested founding a fund to support health. Cabinet ministers expressed their willingness to establish such a fund, but noted that financing for the fund would not be issued through the state budget. The Prime Minister suggested that the fund operate in cooperation with the private sector and foreign and domestic donors.
The Prime Minister also assigned Health Minister A.Tsogtsetseg with providing assistance in establishing a needle and syringe factory.
As of the first seven months of 2016, 26 maternal deaths during childbirth occurred nationwide. The Prime Minister warned health authorities attending the meeting that any achievement or success of local and provincial healthcare authorities will be disqualified in the case of a maternal death occurring in the area, and added that legal measures will be taken against hospital staff, doctors, and hospital and local authorities found to be responsible for a maternal death.
“Even though the country’s economy is in critical condition, Cabinet will not decrease the budget for the health sector in the next 18 months in amendments to the budget. We hope that positive changes to the economy will be observed during this 18 months, as a result of the Cabinet’s policy. After stabilizing the economy, Cabinet will focus on maintenance in hospitals, buying new medical equipment, and salary increases for hospital staff,” noted Prime Minister J.Erdenebat.
Mentioning that Cabinet will hold annual meetings with health sector representatives, J.Erdenebat underlined that the results of the meeting and feedback on the proposed suggestions and insight will be reviewed.