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Ayushman Bharat can be Game Changer: Experts

The ambitious Ayushman Bharat – the National Health Protection Scheme – under the aegis of Prime Minister Jan Arogya Yogana (PM-JAY) has been at the center of conversations in healthcare circles since its launch some months ago. Goa Institute of Management (GIM) organized a debate at a hotel in the city on Saturday where thought leaders representing Government, Industry and Academia discussed and deliberated on the nuances of the Ayushman Bharat program. Speaking at the event, Goa Health Minister Vishwajit Rane said, “While Goa is successfully implementing the DDSSY (Deen Dayal Swasthya Seva Yojana) program, Ayushman Bharat is a revolutionary program in many ways. In addition to the many benefits the program will also lead to the creation of excellent health infrastructure.” Stating that Goa would be adding to its healthcare infrastructure under the PMSSY scheme, he added, “We are in the process of creating a super specialty hospital at a cost of 480 crores and a cancer specialty center all under the PMSSY program. We look towards GIM to offer us researched suggestions, solutions and guidance.”

Explaining the paradoxes that exist in the country’s healthcare landscape, Indu Bhushan, CEO, Ayushman Bharat said, “India has invested in the healthcare sector for the last 70 years yet the needs of 70 percent of the population is met by the private sector. Similarly, while there have been significant efforts to elevate poverty, close to six crore people are driven into poverty each year due to healthcare expenses. While India is one of the fastest growing economy, yet govt spend is low. Ayushman Bharat will address these paradoxes.” “The ambitious program aims to offer access to affordable healthcare to the people who need it the most while also offering financial protection from high expenses on healthcare. The program will also generate employment and create healthcare infrastructure including hospitals in tier II and tier III cities,” he explained further.

Dr Ajit Parulekar, Director, Goa Institute of Management said, “Ayushman Bharat is a much-debated subject within healthcare circles today which has thrown up many questions. What are the planned metrics? How can it instill confidence in the poor? What’s Its impact on pricing and products? All this and more is being debated here today. This conference is aligned to GIM’s objective of being a management thought-promoter and providing a platform for meaningful discussions in the healthcare domain.” Speakers and Panelists also included Indu Bhushan, CEO, Ayushman Bharat; Sujatha Rao, Former Union Health Secretary; Ashutosh Raghuvanshi, CEO, Narayana Health; Joy Chakraborty, COO, P D Hinduja Hospital; A Vaidheesh, V P South Asia and M D, GSK; Ashish Kohli, VP, One Ethicon Surgical Businesses, J&J Medical India; Punit Kohli, MD, Fresenius Medical Care India Pvt Ltd and Sakthivel Selveraj, Senior Health Economist, PHFI. – United News of India