In this article, we will look into eSanjeevani Programme which is basically about Online OPD Service. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare offers the first online OPD service of its type with its National Teleconsultation Service. The Indian government's eSanjeevani service is the nation's first-ever online OPD (outpatient) consultation programme. This is the first time a government has offered its citizens a service of this nature, claims the government. The programme was launched in November 2019 during the Covid-19 epidemic to facilitate patient-to-doctor teleconsultations.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), telemedicine is the delivery of healthcare services where distance is a significant factor by all healthcare professionals using information technology (IT) for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease and injuries, research and evaluation, etc., all with the goal of improving the health of individuals and their communities.
Need for the Scheme
Telemedicine services are crucial in a nation like ours, where the doctor-to-patient ratio is far lower than what the WHO recommends. For every 1445 Indians living in India, there is one doctor (the WHO recommended ratio is 1:1000).
eSanjeevani Programme (Online OPD) | UPSC IAS IPS IFS
eSanjeevani OPD primary goal is to use digital technology to advise people on their health when it becomes impossible for them to attend hospitals due to the coronavirus outbreak. Patients may receive health advice from eSanjeevani OPD online without visiting a hospital, saving them time and money. It will help to bring about system openness while saving a great deal of time and money.
Features available under the scheme are:-
- Patient Registration
- Token Generation
- Queue Management
- Audio-Video Consultation with a Doctor
- SMS/Email Notifications
- Serviced by State's Doctors
- Free Service
- Fully configurable (no. of daily slots, no. of doctors/clinics, waiting room slots, consultation time limit etc.).
A doctor will use eSanjeevaniOPD to create an electronic prescription or ePrescription. The typical components of a prescription are present but in electronic form. Additionally, electronic prescriptions seek to increase patient safety by decreasing drug mistakes.
An excellent solution to the healthcare industry's traffic jam is a telemedicine service platform like eSanjeevani. Moreover, rural people who suffer from a lack of healthcare services might make use of eSanjeevani's potential to maintain better health. This plan has also made possible the uniform distribution of medical personnel and equipment across the nation.
It is a significant victory for the government and the people of India because the Indian Telemedicine Service Platform guarantees residents the best healthcare amenities. Mobile applications can be used to access this service as well.
The program's advantages include expanding access to specialist healthcare services for people in remote villages and rural regions, improving the standard of medical treatment, addressing unequal distribution, and addressing a shortage of human and physical resources. Bridges the digital barrier to providing fair access to healthcare services; can also offer medical training to interns, individuals from other Common Service Centers (CSCs), etc.
Since eSanjeevaniOPD is a web-based application, installation is not necessary to use its features. A laptop, desktop, or full-sized tablet with a camera, microphone, and speakers that can run the most recent versions of Chrome and Firefox is needed to use eSanjeevaniOPD. A functional mobile phone and 2 Mbps Internet access are required for full motion, full-colour video conferencing. eSanjeevani is operational in 31 States and UTs and daily, over 35,000 patients across the Country are using this innovative digital medium.
There are two versions of the eSanjeevani service accessible. The first is the eSanjeevani Ayushman Bharat-Health and Wellness Centre (AB-HWC), a doctor-to-doctor telemedicine service that enables patients at an HWC to remotely interact with experts at a Hub that may be a hospital, medical school, or other tertiary healthcare centres. This makes it possible for the government to offer general and specialized health care in remote villages and rural regions. The second form, eSanjeevani OPD, connects patients to physicians from the comfort of their homes and is available to patients all across the nation. With the ABDM platform, both versions - eSanjeevani AB-HWC and eSanjeevani OPD have been merged.
The eSanjeevani telemedicine platform finally finished integrating with the ABDM, joining 40 digital health apps. These health tech services are constructing a strong, functional, and inclusive digital health ecosystem for the nation as a whole.
Ayushman Bharat Health and Wellness Centers (AB-HWCs) aims to close the digital health gap between rural and urban areas by offering supported teleconsultations. It ensures that Ayushman Bharat Scheme e-beneficiaries may get the benefits they are entitled to. All Indian people will also receive digital health IDs, which would enable hospitals, insurance companies, and individuals to electronically access medical information as needed. Every citizen will receive one, and it will also serve as their health account. This health record will include information on all examinations, illnesses, medical visits, medications used, and diagnoses.
Health ID is totally free and optional. It will aid in analysing health data and enable improved programme design, funding, and execution. India's national telemedicine programme, eSanjeevani, just attained eight crore teleconsultations. With one crore consultations recorded in around five weeks, it broke all previous records.
- The Ayushman Bharat Scheme is implementing eSanjeevani AB-HWC in Health and Wellness Centers.
- Through more than 250 online OPDs established on eSanjeevani OPD, the eSanjeevani OPD offers residents digital health services.
- As part of the National Digital Health Mission, eSanjeevani is fostering the nation's digital health ecosystem.
- Not everyone in the Country has access to technology like laptops and the internet, creating a gap in implementation and access.
- The target population belongs to rural areas, which may not have the technical understanding and training to use the website.
These platforms might be a game-changer for those living in rural locations without convenient access to medical professionals in cities. Time and money are saved with telemedicine. Additionally, these platforms are required to address issues like Covid-19 and are consistent with the government's goal of "Digital India."
In a short period of time, the National Telemedicine Service of the Indian government began assisting the Country's healthcare delivery system by bridging the Country's urban and rural digital health divides. While lessening the strain on secondary and tertiary level hospitals, it also addresses the shortage of primary care physicians and specialists. eSanjeevani is enhancing the nation's digital health ecosystem in accordance with the National Digital Health Mission.
People in various states were quick to see the advantages of eSanjeevani, which has resulted in a positive trend of rapid acceptance of this digital method of accessing healthcare services. Particularly in remote regions, it has resulted in a significant improvement in access to specialized health care. The patients in the metropolitan areas have also benefited from this service, particularly during the second wave of the continuing epidemic that has put a strain on the nation's healthcare delivery system.