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India moving forward in digital health: Mandaviya at G-20 health ministers’ meeting

Gandhinagar: Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Saturday highlighted the significant strides taken by India in implementing innovative digital health solutions at the national level.
“Today is a momentous day in the history of the G20 Health Working Group, wherein, G20 countries not only identified a priority for its relevance but collectively worked towards its launch” Mandaviya said during his keynote address on “Digital Health Innovation and Solutions to aid Universal Health Coverage and Improve Healthcare Service Delivery” at the G20 Health Ministers’ Meeting, here today.
The Union Minster also said that India was a strong vocal advocate of the digital agenda in the global arena under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Mandaviya released the World Bank’s Flagship Report on “Digital in Health – Unlocking Value for Everyone.”
Speaking to mediapersons on the sidelines of the event Mandaviya said “During Covid, people from all over the world used to carry physical vaccination certificates with them, but Indian citizens used to download the Co-WIN app and show the digital certificate. This is India’s strength.”
The Union Health Minister mentioned ‘E-sanjeevani’ platform and said that “Teleconsultation of more than 3 lakh people is happening daily under e-sanjeevani platform. People from far villages are getting the benefit of the service. They don’t have to go far for treatment.”
E-sanjeevani is a digital service provided by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare which provides easy access to doctors from any smartphone without going to the doctor.
Mandaviya also pressed further on the Universal Immunization programme and said, “We are working to create records and certificate. The platform and digital tools which are necessary are ready.”
Universal Immunization Programme (UIP) is a scheme under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare that focuses on providing vaccinations to childrens to save them from life-threatening conditions. It is funded hundred per cent by the Central government.
Mandaviya talked about Ayushman Bharat Health Account (ABHA) ID which enables citizens of India easy access to their health records.
“People should have their digital health records with them. More than 40 crore people are covered under ABHA id. Whenever a patient visits any doctor, they should know the full history of the patient. It is very important,” Mandaviya said.
Mandaviya delivered his keynote address in the presence of Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General, World Health Organization (WHO). Bharati Pravin Pawar and S P Singh Baghel, Union Ministers of State for Health and Family Welfare and V K Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog.
Highlighting that the world today is witnessing an exponential rise in digital health solutions that are focused on vertical health programmes, Mandaviya stated that “this siloed approach and fragmented digital solutions results in significant workload on health workers, inefficiencies due to duplication and lack of interoperability. India’s G20 presidency has leveraged its experience on developing a national digital health architecture through the convergence of digital health interventions aimed at health systems strengthening through interoperability by design”.
Mandaviya applauded the efforts and cooperation of G20 countries, invited countries, international organizations and other stakeholders for collectively recognizing the need of a common framework to integrate all initiatives by consolidating efforts and investments made in the digital health space and creating a comprehensive digital health ecosystem through the ‘Global Initiative on Digital Health – a WHO Managed Network.’
He also reminded dignitaries that India led the Digital Health resolution at 71st World Health Assembly in 2018 in Geneva which spurred global action on this vital agenda. He further stated that India as a chair of Global Digital Health Partnership and Commonwealth Technical Working Group has highlighted the importance of the digital health for health systems strengthening as a critical enabler of national policies.
The three-day G20 Health Ministers’ meeting under G20 India Presidency culminates today.

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