Bill Gates calls on health minister, discusses health system

New Delhi : Microsoft founder and one of the world’s most richest persons Bill Gates on Friday called on union Health Minister J.P. Nadda and discussed various issues related to the health sector in India.

Gates appreciated the slew of initiatives taken by the ministry towards strengthening the health systems, including the success of full immunisation through Mission Indradhanush and the launch of Inactivate Polio Vaccine (IPV).

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“India has made significant progress in improving access to healthcare services, and I believe the country has the political will and creative thinking to come up with solutions of transformative healthcare models that work for all its people, especially women and children so that they survive, thrive and reach their full potential,” said Gates during the meeting.

Gates also assured that he was looking forward to work with the Indian government to strengthen primary healthcare, which is key to accelerating health outcomes for every woman and child in India.

Health Minister Nadda said: “We are looking forward to develop synergies and to use expertise of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) in crucial health related issues.”

He emphasised that the Gates Foundation can play an important role in capacity building and enhancing the investment for the health sector in India.

Nadda talked about the launch of new vaccines including Pentavalent, Pneumococcal, Rota Virus and the adult Japanese Encephalitis vaccine and the work to be carried on to cover the entire country.

During the meeting, it was agreed that Bill Gates’s Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will support the ministry in strengthening health systems further in order to enhance the capacity within the sector and to reduce out-of-pocket expenditure.