Odisha Eyes

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik welcomes delegates from the United Nations to discuss progress on Sustainable Development Goals. The Odisha Cabinet has approved universal eyecare for residents under the Universal Eye Health Program. (Naveen Patnaik Twitter photo)

BHUBANESWAR — The Odisha Cabinet March 14 approved a scheme to provide universal access to comprehensive eyecare services from primary to tertiary levels in the state.

The Cabinet approved the Universal Eye Health Program on affordable eyecare in services in rural and tribal areas and has made skilled manpower and equipment available.

It also aims to generate a baseline of data on the prevalence of eye diseases in the state through a sample survey. All backlogged cataract cases will be addressed by 2023.

The scheme will also have provisions for adequate eyecare infrastructure in medical colleges, district and sub-divisional hospitals, and community health centers.

The program will be implemented between 2018-19 and 2022-23.

The Cabinet also approved universal coverage of water supplies in urban areas by 2018-19.

The Housing and Urban Development Department has prepared an action plan for urban water supplies to achieve universal coverage to all wards of the 114 Urban Local Bodies by the end of 2018-19, an official statement said.

The water supply program will be implemented by leveraging funds from the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation, the District Mineral Fund, grants from the 4th State Finance Commission and the Urban Water Supply Program under the state.

The Cabinet also approved a sub-scheme – the Biju Yuva Vahini, under the Biju Yuva Sashaktikaran Yojana – to reach out to youths at the grass-root level and encourage them to engage in youth-led social action and community engagement activities.

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