Healthcare is now a click away

The Centre, in collaboration with Apollo Hospitals, on Tuesday launched a telemedicine initiative to provide medical facilities at primary <g data-gr-id="23">healthcare</g> centres in rural areas. Under this programme, people can consult doctors online through <g data-gr-id="29">video</g> link. The service ‘Sehat’ will help people in remote areas get <g data-gr-id="28">online</g> consultation with doctors. They can also order generic drugs online.

The tele-consultation services are being provided to patients through Common Service Centres (CSCs) with support from Apollo and Medanta in some areas. With this initiative, these services are being extended to 60,000 CSCs across the country. Under this programme, a patient can visit CSCs and fix an appointment with a doctor.

Hailing the move, Communications and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said, “Quality and affordable healthcare is one of the emerging needs for citizens in rural areas. I am happy that CSC SPV and Apollo have come together to address this issue and have come up with a workable solution,”  adding that the CSCs will also provide diagnostic services and promote sale of generic drugs through collaboration with Health Ministry, by setting up Jan Aushadhi stores.

Surprisingly, even though providing healthcare facility to the citizen of the country is under the ambit of <g data-gr-id="27">health</g> ministry, neither of the Health Minister JP Nadda or Health Secretary BP Sharma <g data-gr-id="26">were</g> present there.

CEO of the Bureau of Pharma Public Sector Undertakings of India (BPPI) MD Sreekumar said, “Despite the fact that generic drugs are as effective as any branded formulation, people are reluctant in using the drugs due to lack of awareness.”

“At present, there are only 240 generic drugs available across the counter, the consultation with pharmaceutical companies are in process to expand the list of Jan Aushadhi formulations in coming months. We have also planned to increase the number of these stores to 3,000 by the end of the year,” Sreekumar said.

Health Ministry to accelerate organ transplant programme
In the wake of announcement made by Health Minister JP Nadda to develop a policy mechanism and address the institutional gaps to promote organ donation, Health Secretary BP Sharma hold a meeting to consider further steps for accelerating the organ transplant programme of the ministry. 

Apart from senior officers of the ministry, technical experts, including senior doctors also participated in the meeting, where it was noted that the rate of cadaveric transplants – as opposed to transplant of organs from a live donor – was very low.
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