PM Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission

The Prime Minister launched the PM Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission in October 2021 in a major boost to enhancing healthcare infrastructure in the country. In this article, you can learn more about the PM Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission, its features and significance.

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Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission

The PM Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission is the biggest all-India scheme to develop and improve the long-term public healthcare infrastructure in India.

  • The government has laid out a spending budget of Rs 64,180 crore for the FY 2021-22 to 2025-26.
  • This is in addition to the National Health Mission and it will fill the gaps in public health infrastructure in India, particularly in the critical care and primary care facilities in both urban and rural areas.
  • The scheme was launched from Varanasi and will be implemented in all the districts in India.
  • The scheme aims to make India ready to effectively manage any future pandemics and health emergencies.  
  • It will support 17,788 rural health and wellness centres in ten high-focus states.
  • The mission also envisages establishing another 11,024 urban health and wellness centres in India.
  • Under this scheme, 134 types of tests will be done free of cost at the district level.

Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission Objectives

The objectives of the mission are as follows:

  1. To ensure a robust public health infrastructure in both urban and rural areas, capable of responding to public health emergencies or disease outbreaks.
  2. To establish an IT-enabled disease surveillance system through a network of surveillance laboratories at block, district, regional and national levels.

Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission Components

The mission has three components charted out. They are discussed in this section.

Component 1: Setting up comprehensive surveillance of infectious diseases

  • Under this, Integrated Public Health laboratories will be set up in all the 730 districts of the country.
  • Five regional branches and 20 metropolitan units of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) will be established at the state level.
  • Finally, at the national level, an Integrated Health Information Platform (IHIP) will be set up.

Component 2: Creation of comprehensive diagnostics and treatment facilities

  • District level interventions: Under this, new health and wellness centres will be opened in both rural and urban areas. Critical care hospital blocks will be started in every district with over 5 lakh population.
  •  State-level intervention: 15 health emergency operation centres will be established.
  • National level intervention: Setting up of two container-based mobile hospitals; critical care hospital blocks in 12 GOI hospitals – the latter will also become mentor institutions for training & capacity building.
    • The containers or container-based mobile hospitals with a capacity of about 100 beds each will be placed in Chennai and Delhi and can be airlifted or taken by trains to the place of emergency.

Component 3: Comprehensive pandemic research

  • District level intervention: Existing 80 viral diagnostics and research labs will be strengthened.
  • State-level intervention: 15 new bio-safety level III laboratories will be operationalised.
  • National level interventions: 4 new regional national institutes for virology will be set up; a regional research platform (digital) for WHO southeast Asia Region will also be set up.

Conclusion 

The PM Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission is significant because India lacks an extensive healthcare system. The accessibility and affordability of healthcare has been distributed in a skewed manner and very much to the detriment of the marginalized sections of society. Hence, the new mission can prove to be beneficial in taking quality and necessary healthcare services to all sections of society.

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