Governor Phagu Chauhan and Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma were among the dignitaries in Shillong who attended the virtual launch of the Ayushman Bhava campaign, a national public health initiative to encourage enrolment in the national health insurance scheme.
The initiative was launched by President Droupadi Murmu. The official virtual launch function in Shillong was held at the State Convention Centre in the presence of Health Minister Ampareen Lyngdoh and senior officials from the Health Department.
Addressing the gathering, Sangma said that development will be meaningless if the government is not able to provide the basic health facilities at the grassroots.
“The government in different social and economic sectors has programmes that are specific to different social sectors, categories and regions and target different issues like health, education and farming so that a holistic and inclusive development is achieved,” he said.
“We are a society that thrives on community and we are leveraging the advantage of this community-based system to ensure that health services are also provided at the grassroots,” the CM added while also announcing that Rs 20,000 will be given to every Village Health Council (VHC) that is actively working for their communities. “We are looking forward to how the VHCs will transform things in the health sector at the grassroots level,” he added.
The Meghalaya government is working on improving aspects that are hampering the delivery of healthcare in the state, such as lack of water, power, medicine supply, manpower training, equipment management and procurement. The government is also upgrading health infrastructure at the grassroots levels.
The Ayushman Bhava campaign launched today was introduced during the Seva Pakhwada (Service Fortnight) from September 17 and will end on October 2. During the fortnight several activities have been planned to enhance healthcare accessibility and awareness.
Ayushman Bhava is an umbrella campaign comprising Ayushman Apke Dwar 3.0 which is aimed at the creation and distribution of Ayushman cards to all remaining eligible beneficiaries; Ayushman Mela as part of which weekly health melas will be held at the level of AB-HWCs and community health centres (CHCs) and Ayushman Sabha, a village/ward level sabha to be held to enhance awareness about various health care schemes and services. Around 60,000 people will be given Ayushman Bharat cards.