From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : AB- Health Infrastructure Mission
Mains level : Not Much
PM has launched the Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission (AB-HIM), one of the largest pan-India schemes for strengthening healthcare infrastructure.
AB- Health Infrastructure Mission
- AB-HIM is being rolled out as India’s largest scheme to scale up health infrastructure.
- It is aimed at ensuring a robust public health infrastructure in both urban and rural areas, capable of responding to public health emergencies or disease outbreaks.
- Health and Wellness Centres: In a bid to increase accessibility it will provide support to 17,788 rural HWC in 10 ‘high focus’ states and establish 11,024 urban HWC across the country.
- Exclusive Critical Care Hospital Blocks: It will ensure access to critical care services in all districts of the country with over five lakh population through ‘Exclusive Critical Care Hospital Blocks’.
- Integrated public health labs: will also be set up in all districts, giving people access to “a full range of diagnostic services” through a network of laboratories across the country.
- Disease surveillance system: The mission also aims to establish an IT-enabled disease surveillance system through a network of surveillance laboratories at block, district, regional and national levels.
- Integrated Health Information Portal: All the public health labs will be connected through this Portal, which will be expanded to all states and UTs, the PMO said.
Why is the scheme significant?
- India has long been in need of a ubiquitous healthcare system.
- A 2019 study has highlighted how access to public health care remained elusive to those living on the margins.
- The study found that 70 per cent of the locations have public healthcare services.
- However, availability was less in rural areas (65 per cent) compared to urban areas (87 per cent).
- In 45 per cent of the surveyed locations, people could access healthcare services by walking, whereas in 43 per cent of the locations they needed to use transport.