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Government Accomplishes Only Halfway Mark to Set up HWCs

The Modi Government has a tough job on hand. Against the target of setting up 15,000 Health and Wellness Centers (HWCs) by March-end 2019 under the Government’s ambitious Ayushmaan BharatPradhan Mantri Jan Ayush Yojna (PMJAY), the figures have just crossed the halfway mark with only 8030 centers being operational as on February 2, 2019. Of these, over 2,000 centers are concentrated in two Southern States — Andhra Pradesh tops the list with 1361 centers closely followed by Tamil Nadu (1318) while other States are nowhere even near to the four digit mark. The Union Health Ministry, which is overseeing the centrally sponsored scheme, is, however, hopeful to achieve the target stating that approval has already been accorded to State and Union Territories for over 21,000 such centers for the current fiscal.

Overall, there are plans to convert a total 1.5 lakh Health Sub Centers and Primary Health Centers into HWCs in a phased manner by December, 2022, Union Minister of State for Health, Ashwini Kumar Choubey told the Parliament in a written reply. Under the health flagship scheme launched in September last year, the Center is providing health coverage up to Rs. 5 lakh per family per year for secondary and tertiary hospitalization as well as supporting the States for strengthening Sub Centers and Primary Health Centers as HWCs for provision of comprehensive primary care that includes universal screening, prevention and management of common non-communicable diseases like diabetes and cancer among poor people. – Daily Pioneer