New Delhi: “The CGHS services which started in 1954 from Gol Market in Delhi expanded to only 25 cities till 2014. However, in the last five years under the NDA Government they have been extended to as many as 71 cities. The progress that we have achieved under the visionary leadership of the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi ji can be clearly seen. We are aggressively witnessing reforms in every area of the health sector.” This was stated by Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare at the inauguration of the state-of-the-art CGHS Bhawan, in Sector 13 of R K Puram in New Delhi today in the presence of Smt. Meenakshi Lekhi, Member of Parliament, New Delhi. At the event, Dr Harsh Vardhan also launched the new scheme of Annual Health Check-up of CGHS beneficiaries who are pensioners of the age of 75 years and above. At the event, Dr Harsh Vardhan stated that CGHS services should be made available in 100 cities by 2022, when the Prime Minister wishes to deliver a New India to all the citizens.
The new Bhawan is the CGHS Headquarters and houses the administrative section, the CGHS Card section, and a state-of-the-art modern and well equipped Wellness Centre.
Speaking at the inaugural ceremony, Dr Harsh Vardhan said that CGHS services have undergone a remarkable positive change. While the rules have been simplified, several people friendly facilities have also been added. “The scheme has the potential of becoming one of the best in the world. I wish you to have an internal brainstorming among senior CGHS doctors to evaluate the possibilities of further improvement of the scheme, for strengthening the transparency and adding further reforms”, Dr Harsh Vardhan elaborated. The Union health Minister assured the CGHS doctors that all positive reforms shall be incorporated in the planning. He also appealed to the CGHS beneficiaries to send their positive suggestions for improvement of the services. In addition, he appreciated the new CGHS initiative of calling telephonically and inquiring about the health of beneficiaries who are above 80 years of age. The Health Minister stressed on the need for compassion and politeness in the behaviour of doctors towards their patients.
At the event, Dr Harsh Vardhan said that reforms in the health sector are one of the priorities of the Government and it has shown exemplary commitment under the Prime Minister to take them forward. The Health Minister added that with the announcement of creation of new AIIMS, the total number of proposed AIIMS has gone up to 22. He also mentioned that the National Medical Commission Act 2019 passed by both Houses of Parliament is historic and path-breaking. It is a huge and visionary reform in the medical education sector by the Government, and will prove to be a milestone in the years to come, he said. “Under Ayushman Bharat, 150000 Health and Wellness Centres are planned to come up by 2022. While the PMJAY scheme is nearing completion of its first year since its launch on 23rd September last year, and several events are being planned across the country to commemorate the occasion”, Dr Harsh Vardhan stated. He also said that since 2014, a total of 157 new Medical Colleges have been approved as part of the scheme for upgrading district/referral hospitals to Medical Colleges. These are in various stages of completion and shall very significantly strengthen the medical education infrastructure in the country, he added.
Smt. Preeti Sudan, Secretary (Health), Shri Sanjeeva Kumar, Spl. Secretary (Health), Dr Atul Prakash, Director (CGHS), Dr Sanjay Jain, Addl Director-HQ (CGHS) along with other senior officers from the Ministry and CGHS were present at the event.