Odisha to set up country’s first public health university

Bhubaneswar: With an aim to create experts in public health, Odisha is all set to establish the country's first public health university in the state.
The state government on Monday signed an MoU with city-based Asian Institute of Public Health (AIPH) for setting up the university on public private partnership (PPP) mode.
The public health university, to be set up with an aim to create experts in public health, will have no affiliated medical colleges nor attached hospital, official sources said.
The state government has alloted 50 acres of land for the proposed university at Gramdiha on the city's suburbs, Health Minister Damodar Rout told reporters after the health secretary P K Mohantra signed the MoU.
Rout said Rs 100 crore will be invested initially for the university. "The state government had earlier announced the setting up of a public health university. Today, with the signing of the MoU, we have met our commitment," Rout said.
AIPH will establish the university in collaboration with US-based University of Nebraska Medical Centre.
Stating that the university would be fully functional in two to three years, Rout said it would offer education on areas like treatment and eradication of malaria, behavioural health, women & child health and eradication of contagious diseases. It would also help create a cadre of experts in the realm of public health through its emphasis on health.
Claiming the public health university would be helpful for the poor people of the state, Health Secretary Mohapatra said, "Public health as a subject has great importance for the state because preventive healthcare is of utmost importance, especially because several people in the state were dying from preventable diseases."