The draft national health policy, issued by the Union ministry of health and family welfare late last year, does not just stress implementation. It adds that there should be a framework that will “specify approved financial allocations and linked to this measurable numerical output targets and time schedules”. It is just as well that this is a draft policy, as the Union Budget for the coming year (2015-16) has allocated just under Rs 30,000 crore, which is virtually the same as the revised estimate for the current year (2014-15). But this is after the estimates were slashed by 20 per cent late last year – in the mindless manner in which allocations are cut as the end of the financial year approaches, in order to achieve the semblance of a more balanced Budget.

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