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Modi's ambitious Ayushman Bharat served over 2.2 crore people in last 3 years: Mandaviya

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New Delhi, Sep 23: The Ayushman Bharat-Pradhan Mantri Jan Aarogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY) has reformed the entire healthcare system of India and served over 2.2 crore people in the last three years, including those residing in remote areas, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya said on Thursday.

Modis ambitious Ayushman Bharat served over 2.2 crore people in last 3 years: Mandaviya

Mandaviya inaugurated and chaired the inaugural session of Aarogya Manthan 3.0 to mark the third anniversary of the AB-PMJAY. The scheme was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 23, 2018 from Ranchi with the vision to achieve Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

"The AB-PMJAY has reformed the entire healthcare system of India. It gives me great happiness that the scheme has served more than 2.2 crore people in the last three years to the people residing in the remotest of the areas," Mandaviya said.

"The journey of the last three years of implementation of the scheme has been tremendous as it has empowered millions of citizens of India with their Right to Health," he added. Mandaviya said health and development are interlinked. "Universal Health care is the objective and vision of the prime minister. Leveraging digital technology in the healthcare sector, India aims to set national goals of digitising the healthcare landscape to make delivery of services smooth, robust, quick and efficient," he said.

"In this regard, the National Digital Health Mission will prove to be a game-changer step. Public government partnership is the reason for the success of any government program. Ayushman Mitra is one such initiative," he added. Mandaviya also virtually interacted with AB-PMJAY beneficiaries from Jammu and Kashmir, Chhattisgarh, Andaman and Nicobar, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Assam.

Minister of State for Health Bharati Pravin Pawar said the scheme has great potential to rejuvenate the primary and secondary healthcare facilities. "This year's theme for Aarogya Manthan 3.0 is 'service and excellence' and I believe that AB-PMJAY is fulfilling this noble cause in terms of serving more than 54 crore targeted people with free, accessible and quality medical care across India," he said.

While showcasing the three-year journey of AB-PMJAY, Dr RS Sharma, CEO, National Health Authority said the scheme is taking one step each day to reach closer to the goal of Universal Health Coverage. This exemplary work done as part of the scheme has been possible due to its robust IT system and the extensive work done at the ground level, he said. "Since the inception of the scheme, more than 2 crore treatments worth Rs. 26,400 crores have been authorised through a network of over 24,000 empanelled hospitals across the country. In the last three years, more than 16.50 crore beneficiaries have been verified and provided with Ayushman Cards with female beneficiaries amounting to approximately 50 per cent of this number," he said.

"As of September 23, 2021, over 2.6 lakh hospital admissions worth Rs 586 crore have been authorised leveraging the pan-India portability feature of the AB-PMJAY. The innovative e-Rupy platform can be used to leverage the PMJAY further," he added. During the event, Mandaviya gave the 'Ayushman Utkrishta Puraskaar' to the best performing AB-PMJAY states/ UTs for efficient implementation of the scheme.
The minister also launched key initiatives -- hospital helpdesk kiosk, beneficiary facilitation agency, PMJAY command centre and nudge unit, and revamped PMJAY technology platform, undertaken by the National Health Authority for the ease of beneficiaries while availing healthcare services under the scheme.

The objective of the hospital helpdesk kiosk initiative is to directly connect the beneficiaries with hospitals and provide an enhanced and seamless accessibility of information at the time of admission, a health ministry statement said. This would also help create a uniform identity of AB-PMJAY for the beneficiaries and patch lapses, if any. It will function as a dedicated service window with a potential to provide all types of information about the scheme to the visitors.

Beneficiary Facilitation Agencies (BFAs) will be deployed at empanelled public hospitals under AB-PMJAY. These BFAs will be mandated to scrutinise all IPD patients in public hospitals for their eligibility under AB-PMJAY. Further, the BFAs will also provide necessary assistance to PMJAY beneficiaries for availing services under the scheme, it said. The PMJAY command centre will ensure real-time tracking of beneficiary seeking treatment at any empanelled hospital across India.

While the revamped PMJAY technology platform is based on the experience of the last three years, three core applications of AB-PMJAY IT platform for enriching the experience of beneficiaries, hospitals and claims processing agents were unveiled, the statement said. The Beneficiary Identification system (BIS), verifies the beneficiary identity.

In the revamped system, self or assisted beneficiary verification feature has been introduced. The new Transaction Management System (TMS) has optimised documentation requirements for claim submission and rationalised query raising while claim processing, it said. The hospital empanelment module used for hospital empanelment and locating the hospitals under the scheme has been revamped to facilitate ease of empanelment through streamlined process and digital MoU. It will also help with informed decision-making regarding choice of hospital based on the public profile of empanelled hospitals, it stated.

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