Economic Survey 2023: AB-PMJAY penetration grows; over 31 crore people are linked under the digital mission, Health News, ET HealthWorld

New Delhi: Ahead of the forthcoming Union Budget, the Economic Survey 2023 has observed the rise in penetration of Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri—Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY), the world’s largest health insurance scheme. The survey was tabled by the Union Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs, Nirmala Sitharaman, at the Rajya Sabha today.

AB PMJAY is aimed at minimising the out-of-pocket expenses (OOPE) of the target beneficiaries due to healthcare expenditures. According to the survey, as of January 4, 2023, 21.9 crore beneficiaries had been verified under the AB PM-JAY scheme, with three crore beneficiaries verified using state IT systems.

The survey further adds that approximately 4.3 crore hospital admissions, amounting to Rs 50,409 crore, have also been authorised under the scheme through a network of over 26,055 hospitals. This is a substantial increase from the initial 2022–2023 Budget estimates of around Rs 6,000 crore allocated for public insurance.

The scheme provides health coverage of Rs 5 lakh per family per year for secondary and tertiary care hospitalisation to over 10.7 crore poor and vulnerable families (approximately 50 crore beneficiaries) that form the bottom 40 per cent of the Indian population identified based on the deprivation and occupational criteria of the Socio-Economic Caste Census 2011 (SECC 2011) and other state schemes.

Apart from this, the economic survey also focuses on health and wellness centres (HWCs). In all, 1,54,070 AB-HWCs have been operationalised across the country by upgrading the SHCs and PHCs in rural and urban areas, states the survey. The AB-HWCs provide comprehensive primary health care by expanding and strengthening the existing reproductive and child health services and communicable disease services, and by including services related to non-communicable diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, and three common cancers, viz.

The economic survey also talks about more than 87.0 crore cumulative screenings for non-communicable diseases having been conducted nationwide. More than 9.3 crore teleconsultations had been provided through functional HWCs at 15,465 hubs (MBBS, specialty, and super specialty doctors at the zonal level) and 1,12,987 spokes (AB-HWCs at the state level) across the country as of January 17, 2023.

The Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission (ADHM) aims to increase the adoption of digital technologies in healthcare by allowing citizens to access and exchange their health records with their consent through services such as the issuance of health ID, healthcare professionals registry, health facility registry, and health records.

As per the survey, as of January 10, 2023, 31,11,96,965 Ayushman Bharat health accounts (formerly known as Health IDs) had been created. The digital mission has verified 1,92,706 facilities on the health facility registry. A total of 7,52,01,236 health records have been linked.

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