NeW DELHI: The government has renewed its efforts to soon eradicate tuberculosis from the country, health minister JP Nadda assured the Rajya Sabha even as he admitted that the anti-TB programmes had got a bit "sluggish" during the past few years.
Replying to a question about the impact of the tuberculosis programme and how long will it continue, Nadda said "this continuous programme is running. We have made new interventions. The programme had got a big sluggish in between. We have tried to rectify it. Many new interventions have been made and very soon, we will be able to curb tuberculosis."
The health ministry has also signed an agreement with the International Development Association (IDA) to support components under the Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme (RNTCP) for $100 million for the period between April 2014 and April 2017 for procurement of drugs, diagnostics and services, Nadda said.
He added the government is also initiating many other new interventions and will be able contain the disease very soon.
"The sanctioned funds have been spent only on recommended activities and as per norms. The booked expenditure up to March 2016 is $14.42 million," Nadda said.
The minister said that upon reviewing the pace of expenditure and utilization of the sanctioned amount, it was decided by the department of health and family welfare in 2015-16 to restrucutre the disbursement mechanism under a hybrid model where only a portion of the loan is linked to procurement and the balance is linked with other programme-based indicators for disbursement of funds.
He said this restructuring has been approved by the government and World Bank recently and under the hybrid model and the claims of reimbursement of another $22 million have been processed.
Nadda said that 90% of budget on anti-TB programme was now to be spent on procurement of drugs, 5% on procurement of commodities and 5% for services. "We have made a vibrant programme where we have restructured the whole system and the fund is being utilized," he said.