News from across Meghalaya…

CM forsees growth in meat processing sector
SHILLONG: Chief Minister Conrad Sangma said on Friday the meat processing sector in the state has the potential to grow exponentially alongside agricultural processing. “The total consumption of pork in the northeastern region is 3.1 lakh metric tonnes (MT) and the total supply is only 1.2 MT. There is a deficit of about 1.9 lakh MT. This is an opportunity for our farmers to fill the deficit in the supply chain. Investing in piggery will greatly improve the livelihood options of the 1.62 lakh farming households directly engaged in rearing pigs in the State,” he told a gathering at a workshop on piggery and poultry at the State Convention Centre here. The government has initiated steps to assist farmers with skill development programmes, special projects, infrastructure development and necessary training to improve their working environment. “The government will be funding an aggregation of Rs 10 crore to aspiring entrepreneurs from formal banks to generate employment in the state,” Sangma said. He also stated that the government will be signing an MoU with University of Berkley, California, to promote the SMART village project initiative.

Private hospitals meet govt for MHIS-III dues
SHILLONG: Many private hospitals on Friday met the state government and raised the issue of not clearing the pending dues following the implementation of MHIS-III. Though the government had cleared Rs 15 crore to the insurance company, the latter had not disbursed the same to the private hospitals. The government has already launched MHIS-IV for which the private hospitals were roped in to provide medical care. MHIS-IV has been launched in convergence with Ayushman Bharat – Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY). Secretary of the Health Department, Pravin Bakshi however, said that the government is also willing to pay a small amount of Rs 2 crore which was a Central share to the private hospitals for lapsed claims, adding that the private hospitals have to check their claims and get it settled with the previous insurance company which was implementing the phase III of the MHIS. Furthermore, the Health Minister, AL Hek has appealed to the private hospitals to participate in MHIS-IV which is designed to serve the people of the state.

Action sought against teacher over fake docus
SHILLONG: The headmistress of Khetadhowa SSA UP School in West Garo Hills has written to the State Project Director to take legal action against a teacher for allegedly possessing fake government documents. In the letter, she mentioned that Nurul Amin, who teaches Hindi, aims to become the head teacher of the school but his documents are fake. Amin allegedly possesses two documents, dated September 12, 2018 and November 2, 2018, issued by the former DMC of Tura but there is no record of the documents in the office issue register.

Four women felicitated for cleanliness
SHILLONG: Four women were felicitated at a function held at Maurice Patrick King Memorial School, Laitryngew in East Khasi Hills on Friday for rendering selfless services to the community of ensuring a clean and spirited environment for the villagers. Coincidentally, these women namely Hliak Mawlong (65) and Pahuhlang Mawlong (37) of Dympep, Icydora Sohkhlet (50) and Jancydora Syngai (35) of Mawsmai village, were honoured their accolades when the world was observing International Women’s Day. Apart from being felicitated by the State Coordinator of Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin), A Lynkhoi, alongside the Block Development Officer of Shella Bholaganj (C&RD) Block and other state officials, this group of women also received a token of Rs 10,000 each.

Training of monitoring cell ahead of LS election
NONGSTOIN: The District Election Officer (DEO) of West Khasi Hills, T.Lyngwa in the training session held at the Conference Hall on Friday, called upon the Government functionaries and PSUs under the District to be prepared for the upcoming Lok Sabha Election, 2019. The objectives of the training are to prepare, highlight and refresh the role and responsibility of various monitoring cell to conduct smooth election. S.Warjri, EAC (Election) dwelt at length the role and responsibility of various election cell like accounting, expenditure, flying squad, MCMC and others by bringing forward the changes and modification of rules, acts and form format by the Election Commission of India (ECI). Warjri also informed the gathering about the new introduction of the apps the new citizen VIGIL which will be used in the upcoming election. The training was attended by the District Officials and members of all the Monitoring Cells. Another training was conducted on the same day at the DC office where BDO Nongstoin C.P. Mawkon highlighted the various rules and guidelines pertaining any violation of the Model Code of Conduct (MCC), which was attended by political parties and the media.

International conference on health finance
SHILLONG: An international conference on “Using Evidence for Decision-Making in Health Benefits Package Design” was hosted in Guwahati recently. The conference represented an international collaborative effort between the Meghalaya Government, the Indian Institute of Public Health Shillong, and partners from the Centre for Global Development (CGD), Imperial College London (ICL), and the International Decision Support Initiative (IDSI). Health finance teams from the Northeastern states of Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh participated along with representations from government, academic, non-government, and multi-lateral organisations such as the WHO, World Bank and UNICEF. As India moves towards the achievement of Universal Health Coverage (UHC), finding robust and evidence-based answers to the challenges of defining which services should be publicly funded, for whom, and how, becomes increasingly important. The introduction of Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY) brings with it, an urgent need for state policymakers to rationalise multiple schemes, benefits, and purchasing and contracting strategies, and enhance quality monitoring to assure that public subsidies for insurance are being well spent. Sonata Dhkar, state manager of the Megha Health Insurance Scheme (MHIS), spoke on behalf of the Department of Health & Family Welfare, and presented an introduction of the government’s MHIS. Roshan Ronghang, from the Indian Institute of Public Health, Shillong (IIPH-S) presented an analysis of the Megha Health Insurance Scheme (MHIS). Participants found the evolution and progress of MHIS over time fascinating as Meghalaya progresses towards achieving Universal Health Coverage.

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