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Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan. (File photo)
Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan. (File photo)

Ayushman Bharat will be game-changer for universal healthcare: Harsh Vardhan

ANI | Updated: Sep 17, 2019 21:52 IST

New Delhi [India], Sept 17 (ANI): Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Tuesday said that the Ayushman Bharat scheme will prove to be a game-changer in the provisioning of universal healthcare.
"Last year, we started the Ayushman Bharat journey with its twin pillars. First -- with the inaugural of a Health & Wellness Centre (HWC) at Jangla, a remote place in Chhattisgarh on April 14. Second -- the launch of Ayushman Bharat -- or the Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY) on September 23 in Ranchi under the vision of our Prime Minister (Narendra Modi)," he said while addressing a press conference on 'Ayushman Bharat Pakhwada'.
"Today, I am happy to announce that we have established more than 21,000 HWCs in a short period of time. About 47 lakh people have availed treatments under its Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY) pillar," the minister remarked.
Harsh Vardhan said that the central government has set a target to establish 1.5 lakh HWCs by December 2022.
Further elaborating on the benefits that have accrued from the AB-HWCs, the Health Minister stated: "More than 1.5 crore of the population has been screened for hypertension and more than 70 lakh people have been put on treatment. Similarly, around 1.3 crore of the population are screened for diabetes and more than 31 lakhs people are on treatment."
"For suspected cases for the three common cancers (breast, cervix and oral), these are referred to the higher public healthcare facilities for diagnosis and treatment. More than 76 lakh of the population has been screened for oral cavity cancer and out of these, 10,218 people are on treatment," he added.
The minister said that over 53 lakh women are screened for breast cancer and around 9,700 women are on treatment while more than 37 lakh women are screened for cervical cancer.
"In addition, more than 1.6 crores have been provided medicines and around 49 lakh of the population are provided diagnostic services," Harsh Vardhan remarked.
The minister also informed that teleconsultation services to the people with the qualified medical officers and specialists for cases referred from sub-health centre level and PHC level respectively will be introduced shortly.
Since the launch of AB-PMJAY, treatments in more than 47 lakh hospitals worth over Rs 7,500 crore have been carried out.
"Of the total amount utilised, 55 per cent has been on tertiary procedures. In addition, more than 10 crore beneficiary cards have been issued. As on date, 32 states and Union Territories are implementing PMJAY," said Harsh Vardhan.
Meanwhile, Dr Indu Bhushan, CEO of National Health Authority, said, "Under AB-PMJAY, about 18,073 hospitals and healthcare providers have been empanelled across the country. Of this, 53 per cent of the hospitals empanelled are private, especially multi-speciality. 62 per cent of the treatments have been in these private hospitals. So far, there have been more than 40,000 portability cases."
Last week, ANI had reported that the Prime Minister is going to launch a newer version of AB-PMJAY mobile application on October 1.
Modi is expected to unveil the AB-PMJAY mobile app at a mega national event "Gyan Sangam" which is going to be organised from September 30 to October 1 in New Delhi to highlight the progress and achievements of the healthcare scheme. (ANI)