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Centre set to revamp Aarogya Setu, CoWIN

By, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Sep 26, 2022 06:09 AM IST

Aarogya Setu was launched as a contact-tracing app for Covid-19. It has been relaunched as a health and wellness application. CoWIN has been extensively used to facilitate Covid-19 immunisation and will now be used for India’s universal immunisation programme.

The central government is repurposing Aarogya Setu and CoWIN, the two digital health platforms used effectively to monitor and manage the Covid-19 pandemic, to manage other public health concerns under the Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission, RS Sharma, chief executive of the National Health Authority, said on Sunday.

Govt to repurpose Aarogya Setu & CoWIN platforms to manage larger public health initiatives
Govt to repurpose Aarogya Setu & CoWIN platforms to manage larger public health initiatives

“We are repurposing India’s digital health solutions. Corona produced two important digital health solutions. One was Aarogya Setu. There are 240 million downloads of Arogya Setu. And since Corona seems to be out of our lives hopefully, this application is being repurposed and will now take care of India’s digital health issues,” Sharma said. “If you go to a hospital, you won’t have stand in a line to register yourself; you can scan and get the OPD card.”

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Also Read| Govt aims to deliver 10 lakh Ayushman Bharat cards everyday: Health Minister Mandaviya

Aarogya Setu was launched as a contact-tracing app for Covid-19. It has been relaunched as a health and wellness application. CoWIN has been extensively used to facilitate Covid-19 immunisation and will now be used for India’s universal immunisation programme.

“CoWIN, which was a Covid vaccination application, is also being repurposed,” Sharma said. “We are repurposing it for the universal immunisation programme, so you can use to find and get other 12 essential vaccines under the national immunization programme, such as the polio drop.”

The Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission was launched on September 27, 2021. Within a year of launch, the digital mission has crossed the landmark of 10 million digitally linked health records, with over 2.7 million records linked in a day, according to data shared by the health authority.

“This reflects an important milestone in the digitisation of health records in the country,” health minister Mansukh Mandaviya said on Sunday.

The Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission was launched on September 27, 2021.
The Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission was launched on September 27, 2021.

Also, at least 150,000 health facilities have been registered in the Health Facility Registry, and around 80,00 health care professionals have been registered under the Healthcare Professionals Registry. So far, 7,11, 571 ABHA app downloads have taken place.

“India in the past decade or so has created a lot of digital public platforms, such as Aadhar, UPI (united payments interface), electronic KYC 9know your customer), digital lockers, etc., which is unique in its own way,” sharma said. “This is what we are doing in the health space as well. At the service level, we are creating registries for doctors, drugs, diagnostics, health records, etc,”

On August 15, 2020, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced ABDM as pilot project in six Union Territories, which was scaled up last year, Sharma said.

The digital platforms are very scalable, he said. “For Covid vaccination, we on day one— January 16, 2021—registered 200,000 doses and then we reached 25 million vaccinations a day, so that’s the scalability.”

On the AB-PMJAY front, the government aims to deliver one million Ayushman Bharat cards everyday, Mandaviya said on Sundaywhile inaugurating the Arogya Manthan 2022 to celebrate four years of AB-PMJAY and one year of implementation of ABDM.

At least 39.5 million admissions amounting to 45,294 crore have been done so far under the government’s flagship health insurance scheme, while 190 million beneficiaries have Ayushman Bharat cards so far, according to official data.

Also Read| Centre to give 5 lakh insurance to kids orphaned due to Covid-19

“Earlier, 1-1.5 lakh Ayushman cards were made daily. Now 4-5 lakh are made daily. My target is to make 10 lakh cards everyday,” said Mandaviya.

Under the Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission, about 100 crore will be spent in every district to strengthen the health infrastructure of the country, the health minister said.

Sharma said that apart from beneficiaries, the implementing authority was also thinking of keeping the interests of hospitals in mind.

“We have revised the packages in past, and will keep on revising the packages for benefit of hospitals. What is required now is participation by all stakeholders and that is what we want with an aim of achieving universal health coverage in India,” Sharma said.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Rhythma Kaul works as an assistant editor at Hindustan Times. She covers health and related topics, including ministry of health and family welfare, government of India.

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