KATMANDU, JULY 14
The government has authorized the Ministry of Health and Population to spend five billion rupees on the purchase of COVID-19 vaccines.
Newly appointed Finance Minister Janardan Sharma made such a move soon after taking office.
The new government formed under the leadership of Nepalese Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba announced on Tuesday that it will provide COVID-19 vaccines to all eligible citizens as its very first decision in office.
The government aims to deliver coronavirus vaccines to one-third of the population by mid-October and to all eligible people by mid-April of next year.
The COVID-19 vaccination campaign has been repeatedly affected in the absence of sufficient vaccine supplies.
The Cabinet meeting on Tuesday evening agreed to provide a risk allowance to frontline people (health workers, security personnel, cleaners, etc.) during the pandemic within a week.
The new Minister of Finance has taken a decision on securing resources for the management of liability in the control and prevention of COVID-19. Under this, Rs. 564.157 million will be transferred for the federal hospital and Rs. 373.49 million will be transferred for hospitals run by provincial governments and local levels through the provincial Ministry of Social Development.
A decision has been taken to allocate Rs. 961.21 million to federal and private hospitals and Rs. 524.44 million to state and local hospitals through the Department of Social Development for the purchase of health equipment , including HDU, ventilator, intensive care, to improve the COVID-19 response capacity of public and private hospitals, according to ministry spokesman Mahesh Acharya.
After taking office, Minister Sharma said pandemic control and prevention and free COVID-19 vaccines for all were the government’s priorities and urged employees to work for the same with dedication.
He said reviving the economy of the country hard hit by the pandemic is the need of the moment and the government is ready to cooperate with the private sector to that end.
He added that an economic policy capable of solving the problems of the poor, backward and marginalized was the need of the time.
Before taking office, Finance Minister Sharma laid a wreath at the pillar of the martyrs at the headquarters of the CPN (Maoist Center) party, Parisdanda.