Budget 2021 Heralds Much-Awaited Reforms in National Nursing and Midwifery Commission

The Budget 2021 address has given hope to the nation about advancements in the Health and Welfare Sector in the coming years. The Healthcare Sector has been gravely affected by the ravages of the COVID pandemic. Union Minister, Mr. Harsh Vardhan has lauded the Government’s attempt at prioritizing the Healthcare sector among the six proposed pillars of developmental goals of the Budget 2021. He has further congratulated the nation for the announcement of a budget overlay of Rs.35,000 lakh crores assigned to COVID support and care.  

The Budget of 2021 strives to focus on transparency, efficiency, and proper governance reforms in the nursing profession. As a stepping stone, Finance Minister of India, Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman has heralded the introduction of the National Nursing and Midwifery Commission (NNMC) which will be ensuring quality neo-natal and maternity care as well as proper education up to international standards for the midwives and nurses of the country. The Budget 2021 has welcomed increased opportunities for development in the Health Sector and the NNMC Bill is but a cherry on the top. The Bill strives to attain these few key goals in the coming years- 

  • Timely regulation and quality maintenance of basic standards of education as well as services by the country’s diverse nursing and midwifery professionals 
  • A thorough assessment of various medical and healthcare institutions of the country 
  • Proper maintenance of a Central Register and State Register system for better record-keeping 

Crafting a comprehensive system to develop access, research, development, and adoption of several latest scientific advancements. 

The Government had previously requested the nation’s citizens to propose recommendations for the NNMC Bill and its implementation. The Bill is said to replace the Indian National Council Act of 1947. The NNMC Bill aims to create a standard entry as well as exit method into the nursing and midwifery profession by planning to conduct a common National Nursing and Midwifery Entrance Test and a uniform National Exit Test. The proposition is hugely directed towards making the nursing services more professional by carefully and clearly defining the diverse array of nursing cadres. The Bill also aims to standardize the nomenclatures as well as the scope of work as per the International Standard Classification of Occupations (ISCO). 

India has a population of 22 lakhs midwives and nurses who have been putting their best foot forward and toiling tirelessly since the inception of the virulent COVID pandemic. The Budget 2021 comes as a silver lining amidst the precarious condition of the healthcare sector in the country. 


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