New Delhi March 3, 2014:-
The Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad inaugurated the Convergence Block and Free Pharmacy Store at AIIMS, here today. 


Speaking at the occasion, Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad said that AIIMS New Delhi has about 9000-10,000 patients being treated at the OPD every day. Of these, many do not have the economic means to purchase medicines. The Generic Pharmacy Store will provide free medicines to such patients, he stated. It is estimated that about 4000 patients will benefit through this store per day. The expense on these free generic medicines will be about Rs. 1.2 cr every month, which will be borne by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Shri Azad stated. 

The Health Minister said that the new Convergence Block will house the faculties for various departments such as Biology, Anatomy, Biochemistry, Physiology, Pharmacology and Pathology. It will also have teaching rooms, labs, research units along with a Knowledge Centre, he said. The Convergence Block has been built at the cost of Rs. 50.85 crore. It has ten floors and two basement areas. The total built area is of 18463 sq. Mts. The building design conforms to energy saving norms, the Minister added. 

Shri Azad also said that during the past five years, the Ministry has taken several decisions for enhancing the infrastructure of health care around the country and also to strengthen the human resources, at all levels, to match this. This has resulted in about 55% enhancement of MBBS seats and about 75% hike in MD seats. The Cabinet passed the proposal for creating 71 new cancer institutes last year, the Minister informed. In addition to this the Cancer Institute at Kolkata will be expanded with a new campus, he noted. 

Present at the occasion were Shri Lov Verma, Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare; Dr M C Mishra, Director, AIIMS; Shri C K Mishra, Addl. Secretary; and senior officers of the Ministry and faculty of AIIMS.