WAC SMOs Conference: 2015 Curtain Raiser

WAC SMOs Conference: 2015 
Curtain Raiser 

SMOs’ (Senior Medical Officers) Annual Conference is being conducted at Headquarters Western Air Command (WAC), New Delhi on 03 and 04 Jul 2015.
About 50 Medical Officers; all heads of Field Hospitals and Medicare centres of AF Stations under WAC will arrive in the National capital to review and plan the operational preparedness and delivery capability of the health care programmes of WAC. Air Mshl Rajan Chaudhry AVSM VSM PHS Director General Medical Services (Air) will be the Chief Guest and Air Mshl B Suresh AVSM VM Senior Air Staff Officer WAC will be the Guest of Honour. Dr Gayatri Vyas Mahindroo Direcor NABH (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Health care providers) has been invited to deliver the Keynote address on “Accreditation of Station Medicare Centres”, which provide primary health care services to all personnel and their families in the Air Force. 

The medical services in the Air Force are progressing towards paperless offices. Implementation of MEDNET- an advance software application – will be one of the major agendas for discussion. A concerted effort will be made to iron out the road blocks being encountered while implementing this high-end software developed for the Station Medicare Centres (SMCs). Rapid Action Medical Team (RAMT) had carried out outstanding relief work in Nepal as a part of Op Maitri after the recent earthquake. The SOPs for mass disaster situations will be revisited and streamlined on the basis of lessons learnt after the recent deployment. The delegates will also be demonstrated the deployment of the tent based hospital on ground. 

IAF medical services are rapidly evolving from a mere Air Evacuation so far to the Air Ambulance role now. A field visit to AF Station Hindan, the premier transport Base of IAF, has been planned where delegates will be demonstrated mass casualty evacuation procedures on C-130 and C-17. Also, a lecture cum demonstration of the indigenously designed PTU (Patient Transport Unit) which enables IAF to transfer a critical patient from one ICU to ICU at another location will be given. 

Aeromedical training is another critical area of focus and the strategy to augment aeromedical training for aircrew will come under discussion. The delegates will be taken to the Aeromedical Training Centre to orient them to the OPTRAM (Operational Training in Aerospace Medicine) training schedules for aircrew as well to familiarise them to DISO (Disorientation Simulator) and NVG (Night Vision Goggles) Lab. This would bring the required synergy between efforts of the medical branch in matching up with modern and advanced operational systems of the IAF. 


AAI Presents Dividend Cheque to Union Minister of Civil Aviation 

The Union Minister of Civil Aviation Shri P. Ashok Gajapathi Raju received a cheque amounting to Rs. 143 crores as final dividend for the year 2013-14 from Shri R.K. Srivastava, Chairman, Airports Authority of India (AAI) in New Delhi today. The AAI declared a dividend of Rs 288 crore for the year 2013-14. An Interim dividend cheque amounting to Rs 145 crore was already presented to the Ministry of Civil Aviation on August 4, 2014. 

Shri R. N. Choubey, Secretary, Ministry of Civil Aviation and other senior officers were also present on the occasion. 


Javadekar Launches Web Portal for Online Application for Environment Clearance for Category ‘B’ Projects in States 

A web portal was launched today for online submission of applications for Environment Clearance by State Environment Impact Assessment Authorities for Category ‘B’ projects, here today. The web portal has been launched across the country and nineteen states have joined it instantly. Launching the portal, the Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri Prakash Javadekar said that the new portal is a “landmark” and online processes have raised the levels of transparency and accountability. Shri Javadekar also added that the online submission of applications will ensure that monitoring is carried out more effectively and on a real time basis and thus, status on the pendency is available clearly. The online submission of applications will also speed up clearance processes, while maintaining the rigours of Environment Clearance process. 

Speaking on the occasion, Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri Ashok Lavasa said that the joining of 19 states is a significant step forward in the process of Environment Clearance. Shri Lavasa also said that with this step, Environment Clearances for Category ‘B’ projects have been put online. Now, the Ministry is targeting to bring all the clearances required and Hazardous Substances Management Rules online. 

Last year, the Ministry had launched the online application system for Environmental Clearance for Category Á’ projects. While applications for Category Á’ projects come to the Ministry for approval, applications under Category ‘B’ projects do not come to the Ministry and are dealt with at the State level itself. Based on the experiences of increased transparency, expeditious disposal without compromising upon the rigour of Environment Clearance, the process has encouraged the Ministry to go in for a similar system at the State level. 

An interactive session was conducted over Video Conferencing with representatives of State Environment Assessment Committees (SEACs) and State Environment Impact Assessment Authorities (SEIAA) from nine states. The nine states include Maharashtra, Gujarat, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Manipur and Punjab. 

The launch of web portal today comes a day after the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, launched the Digital India Week yesterday.


Shri J P Nadda urges states to focus on innovations to achieve superior health outcomes 

Inaugurates National Summit on Good Practices and Innovations in Healthcare 

Launches Voice-based 24*7 Toll-Free National Health Portal 

“Superior outcomes in health care in India will be better achieved with innovations in health practices and products, and I urge states to give priority to innovations and best practices” stated Shri J P Nadda, Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare, while inaugurating the National Summit on Best Practices and Innovations in Healthcare in India, here today. The 3-day National Summit is being organized by the Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare with support from the Department of Health & Family Welfare, Government of Himachal Pradesh. 

At the National Summit, the Health Minister launched the National Health Innovations Portal which will be a repository of all innovations contributed by the states. The Health Minister also launched a voice-based web portal for 24*7 toll-free health services. The NHP Voice Web is a 24X7 toll free helpline (1800-180-1104) wherein the caller can get authentic health on various topics ranging from handy health tips, disease based information, Government health policies and programs, health facilities around you, career options for students and other health related information. This advanced system is capable of recognizing user voice input and currently the information is available in five languages namely English, Hindi, Tamil, Bangla and Gujarati; more Indian languages would be covered. The intent of using telephone technology as a medium to disseminate information is to reach out to masses in remote locations, where there is no internet access thus overcoming the barrier of illiteracy. 

Addressing the participants which included Principal Secretaries (Health) and Mission Directors, National Health Mission (NHM) from the states, the Health Minister stated that the summit is an effort to systematically identify innovations which can have a high impact to address morbidity and mortality and facilitate their prompt scale up through a platform, which would provide repository, learnings, information on enabling milieu and cross-learnings. He added that although some formidable challenges still need to be addressed in many states due to lack of sturdy infrastructure, shortage of skilled manpower to man the PHCs and CHCs, and procurement issues among other things, the National Health Mission has achieved significant and commendable health outcomes covering reduction in IMR, MMR, TFR and providing health care to marginalized sections and far fling areas of the country. He further stated that while health is a state subject, the Centre is committed to providing all assistance and resources to the states in achieving health outcomes which is dependent on a sturdy and meaningful partnership between the states and the Centre. Shri Nadda stated that under the leadership of the Prime Minister, the country is progressing on a path of a constructive cooperative federalism where the states take the lead in designing and implementing programmes and schemes for the benefit of the masses. 

The Health Minister further stated Mission Indradhanush, three rounds of which have been completed and the fourth round will soon commence from 7th July 2015, has resulted in immunization of more than 57 lakh children and more than 8 lakh pregnant women. About 14.5 lakh children have been fully immunized against seven vaccine preventable diseases. This the Minister stated could not have been possible without the dedication and hard work of the frontline health workers who have been at the forefront of the health programs in the country. He added that their insights and inputs should be taken in designing innovations and drafting best practices, as they are the best repositories of experience and knowledge at the cutting edge of implementation of any program. At the Summit, as many as 110 innovations and best practices are being showcased. 

Shri Nadda also released guidelines prepared by the Union Ministry for Health & Family Welfare for the Rogi Kalyan Samitis functioning in the states and for disbursal of free drugs in the states. The Health Minister gave away awards to best practices from various states. The award for maternal health outcomes was given away to Maharashtra followed by Andhra Pradesh and Haryana. In the category of Newborn Survival, Kerala bagged the first prize, while the second and third were given away to Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. 

Senior officers from the Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare including Shri C K Mishra, AS&MD; Shri Manoj Jhalani, JS (P); Dr Rakesh Kumar, JS (RCH, IEC) along with representatives from the states, technical and donor partners of the Ministry participated in the National Summit. 

Amarnath Yatra starts today 
Union Home Minister expresses satisfaction over security & other arrangements for Yatra
The Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh has expressed satisfaction over the security and other arrangements put in place by the State government and Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) for the smooth and peaceful conduct of annual Amarnath Yatra which began today. Shri Rajnath Singh visited the holy cave shrine early this morning to take stock of the security situation and also inspected arrangements for the smooth conduct of Yatra. He said he is satisfied with the feedback from the pilgrims on-the-spot who expressed happiness over befitting arrangements and facilitation mechanism for them. Shri Rajnath Singh paid obeisance at the Cave shrine and had darshan of Shiv Lingam. 

The Union Home Minister reiterated his commitment to extend all support, assistance and encouragement to the Jammu & Kashmir Government to make the Amarnath Yatra safer, secure and eco-friendly. He complimented the State Government for taking excellent measures for the comfort of pilgrims. 

Union Home Minister also met Governor N.N. Vohra at the Raj Bhavan in Srinagar and had extensive discussions about issues relating to external and internal security management. They also discussed matters relating to relief and rehabilitation of the flood victims and the arrangements for the ongoing Amarnath Yatra. 

Speaking to the media, Shri Rajnath Singh reiterated the Centre’s commitment to extend all support and assistance to the victims of the September 2014 flood. He said the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi is keen to see J&K as fully rehabilitated and prosperous state. 

The Union Home Minister said the Centre is ready to listen to all having grievances and issues, however, he unequivocally rejected violent and anti-national activities. Shri Rajnath Singh expressed the hope that improvement in overall security situation in Jammu and Kashmir will lead to a point where there will be no requirement of AFSPA. 

Shri Rajnath Singh said India is committed to maintain cordial and friendly relations with Pakistan and other neighbouring countries while expressing the hope that Pakistan responds positively. He said as of now there is no proposal of any talks with the separatist Hurriyat Conference in Kashmir. 

Before leaving for Delhi, Shri Rajnath Singh visited the Dargah Hazratbal Shrine and prayed for the peace and prosperity of the State. 


Anil Kumar Agarwal Secretary Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs chairs 14th Meeting of Governing Council of Overseas Indian Facilitation Centre in New Delhi 

The 14th Meeting of the Governing Council of Overseas Indian Facilitation Centre (OIFC) was held in New Delhi co-chaired by Shri Anil Kumar Agarwal, Secretary, Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA) and Shri Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). The Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs Smt. Sushma Swaraj interacted briefly with members of the Governing Council. 

OIFC is a not-for-profit Trust set-up by MOIA in 2007, in partnership with CII, to promote economic & knowledge engagement of Indian Diaspora with India. Reviewing OIFC’s Action Plan for 2015-16, the Governing Council directed OIFC to undertake enhanced and sustained engagement with Overseas Indians in a proactive manner. OIFC’s role and activities will therefore be expanded to include - focussed dialogues with overseas Indians; new programmes and initiatives to strengthen outreach towards young overseas Indians; and active engagement with the State Governments to offer their investment projects to the Overseas Indians. Some of these are: 

Recognising overseas Indians as important stakeholders in India’s economic growth and development, OIFC will hold “Investor Connect meets” in select foreign countries with prominent overseas Indians; Indian Diaspora corporate leaders and decision makers to focus their attention on the Indian market. 

OIFC will organise visits to India by business delegations led by overseas Indians from small and medium enterprises to connect them with business partners and relevant stakeholders in Central and State Governments. 

OIFC will offer Diaspora investors an opportunity to invest in social & development enterprises in India. 

OIFC will also launch a Know Indian Economy or “Indonomy” programme which will provide young Diaspora Entrepreneurs an insight into the Indian economy, market and business environment. 

An India Corporate Internship programme will be introduced for final year MBA students of Indian-origin, to provide them an opportunity of work experience in India’s premier corporate organisations. 

Another OIFC initiative “Knowledge Reconnect” will invite eminent scholars, researchers & academicians among overseas Indians to engage in capacity building of India’s MSMEs, faculty & researchers, start-ups & incubators management. 

The participants of the Governing Council meeting included prominent overseas Indians; Indian industry CEOs, and senior officials from GOI Ministries and 12 state governments. 


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