Former Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami should issue statements after ascertaining facts, Health Minister Ma. Subramanian has said.

The Minister was referring to Mr. Palaniswami’s statement that the DMK government was planning to wind up Amma pharmacies.

According to Mr. Subramanian, the Cooperative Department had issued a release stating that the DMK government had opened more medical shops in the past six months.

The previous government had opened an Amma clinic in a crematorium in West Saidapet and another in Tiruvottiyur by demolishing a public toilet under the National Health Mission. It had appointed 1,500 doctors, but not even one nurse, he said.

“I would like the former Chief Minister to give information on how many nurses were appointed. When the funds from NHM dried up, the government could not take it forward. The DMK government has redeployed them for COVID-19 work under the Makkalai Thedi Maruthuvam scheme. We have reached out to one crore people,” he said.

Under the initiative, over 41 lakh persons who had conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, or requiring physiotherapy and dialysis have benefited, he added. He wanted the opposition leader to provide a break-up of diseases treated through Amma clinics during their rule.

“Our department is trying several methods to ensure people get vaccinated. We have introduced free vaccination scheme, door-to-door campaigns and 24-hour service. We reached out to differently abled at their home and vaccinated pregnant women. There was hesitation due to the death of actor Vivekh. We had to reverse the trend. As we wanted all people to be vaccinated we brought a new rule,” he said.

Dengue cases

Mr. Subramanian said so far this year 4,381 persons had contracted dengue and 544 persons were under treatment. They would get well and return home, he assured.

However, dengue infection was lower this year. In 2017 as many as 20,000 people had been infected, he added.