KARACHI: The government has increased spending on health and nutrition sector by 29 percent from Rs 79.46 billion in 2012-2013 to Rs 102.33 billion in the outgoing fiscal year for attaining better health outcomes, report of Economic Survey 2014-2015 said.
It said that rapid population growth is resulting in the inadequacy of health care facilities despite reasonable expansion in number of hospitals, doctors, nurses and other health care facilities.
The economic survey said that the existing national public health network in Pakistan has extended to 167,759 doctors, 13,716 dentists and 86,183 nurses.
The inadequacy of healthcare facilities is reflected as there are estimates of 1,099 persons against one doctor and one dentist versus 13,441 persons, while the current ratio of population and availability of hospital beds works out at 1,647 persons per bed.
The outgoing fiscal year saw tremendous increase in health care facilities which includes an increase of 5,000 doctors, 500 dentist, 3,150 nurses, 4,500 paramedics and provision of 3,600 hospital beds. This together with construction of seven new Rural Health Centres (RHCs) and 32 Basic Health Units (BHUs) and immunization of six million children is an encouraging effort by the government to provide better health facilities to the general public.
To effectively address the health problems, a number of health programs are carried out. These include TB, malaria, AIDs, Cancer Treatment and Food and Nutrition Programs. Adequate food translates itself into improved nutrition which improves the productivity of the labor force.
Pakistan per capita food intake is estimated at 2,450 calories per day for 2013-14 which is at the level of last year, while Protein intake is 72 gram.