Dr. Harsh Vardhan: Ayushman Bharat shall Prove to be a Game-Changer

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Dr. Harsh Vardhan said “I happy to announce that in a short period of time, under the Ayushman Bharat scheme, more than 21,000 health and wellness centers have become operational and about 47 lakh people have availed of treatments under its Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY) pillar”, said by the Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare, Dr. Harsh Vardhan while addressing the media announcing the launch of the Ayushman Bharat Pakhwara.

 

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Ayushman Bharat – Biggest Public Healthcare Initiative In The World

 

Dr. Harsh Vardhan stated that the flagship scheme of the Government, Ayushman Bharat is probably the biggest public healthcare initiative in the world. While the 1.5 lakh Health & Wellness Centres (to be operationalized by Dec 2022) provide comprehensive primary care (CPHC) including preventive and promotive healthcare close to the communities, PMJAY covers 50 crore poor and vulnerable people in the country. It provides a health assurance cover of Rs. 5 lakh per family per year for secondary and tertiary care for serious and catastrophic illnesses, he elaborated. PM-JAY provides cashless and paperless access to services for the beneficiary at the point of service.

 

Early Screening

 

Additional benefits have accrued from the AB- HWCs, the Health Minister stated that more than 1.5 Crore population is screened for hypertension and more than 70 lakhs people are put on treatment; similarly, around 1.3 crore population are screened for Diabetes and more than 31 lakhs people are on treatment. Similarly, for suspected cases for the three common cancers (breast, cervix and oral), they are referred to the higher public healthcare facilities for diagnosis and treatment.

 

Around 53% of the hospitals impaneled are private

 

Approx 18,073 hospitals and health care providers have been impaneled across the country. Of this, 53% of the hospitals impaneled are private, especially multi-specialty, and 62% of the treatments have been in these private hospitals. A unique feature of PMJAY is its portability, which has helped the eligible poor and migrant workers to seek treatment outside their states. So far, there have been more than 40,000 portability cases, he informed.

 

Wider Participation

 

According to the Dr. Harsh Vardhan added that “Through its vision and design, we have been able to bring on board nearly all States and Union Territories and get whole-hearted political and administrative support for it. This is a demonstration of our commitment to the highest ideals of cooperative federalism”.

 

Wider PPP Participation

 

The Health Minister added that recently the Governing Board of the National Health Authority decided to overhaul the existing health benefits packages and rationalize the cost of the packages to remove any aberrations. This will ensure wider private sector participation by impaneling more hospitals to improve access to hospitalization related care.

 

State-of-the-art IT

 

We also denoting an upgrade to our IT system to make it even more user-friendly, interoperable, secure and state-of-the-art, he stated. Initiatives for improving the quality of services were also endorsed, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said.

 

Fraud Prevention

 

Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that a strong fraud prevention, detection, and control system is proving to be critical for PM-JAY, to ensure that frauds are largely prevented and even if they are attempted, they are quickly detected and strong action is taken. Due to the policy of zero tolerance towards corruption, 97 errant hospitals have been de-impaneled and penalties worth more than Rs.1.5 crore have been levied.

 

Arogya Manthan

 

The Union Health Minister also stated that to mark the first year anniversary of PMJAY, the National Health Authority is organizing a 2-day national workshop, Arogya Manthan, on September 30th and October 1st, 2019.

 

Source: Economics Times

 

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