On the Google Play Store, our app has been rated 4.6 on 5. We have seen so far around 1.5 lakh downloads. We have 2 crore Aarogyasri beneficiaries, 11 lakh employees and 80,000 journalists, shares Dr M Chandrashekar, CEO, Aarogyasri Healthcare Trust with Sudheer Goutham of Elets News Network (ENN)
What all healthcare schemes and services are being offered by Aarogyasri Healthcare Trust? Please provide details.
Presently, Aarogyasri Healthcare Trust is implementing three schemes. The first scheme is Aarogyasri Special Treatment Scheme which aims to offer special treatment to the below poverty level families. Under this scheme, both private and public hospitals are empanelled under Aarogyasri Healthcare Trust. This scheme can be availed by poor patients having white ration card supplied by the Civil Supplies Department as a proof. Whenever a patient carrying a white ration card goes to a hospital, private or government, our Aarogyamithras as a functionary will register that patients details. Post-examination in the hospital, the patient will be provided inpatient or outpatient treatment according to their needs. The hospital will raise pre authorisation on the patients note and will be sent to the trust. Once the pre authorisation is approved, the hospital will perform the treatment on the patients. Post treatment, they will raise a claim through an online model. After submitting the claim details, the trust will conduct the investigation and approval procedure. Once approved, the payment will be transferred online. Approximately 2 crore people are the beneficiary under this programme.
The second programme implemented by the Aarogyasri Healthcare Trust is Employee Health Scheme. This scheme covers state government employees and pensioners. Under this programme, charge less treatment is offered to all employees and pensioners of the state government. Under this scheme, cardiac treatment is provided by the trust to the employees or pensioners carrying the card in the hospital empanelled under the trust. As in the Aarogyasri Special Treatment Scheme, outpatient or inpatient care will be given according to the patients need with all formalities to be followed as in the earlier scheme.
In this total process, one lacuna is that the beneficiary does not know which hospitals are empanelled under the trust. They are also not aware of the kind of treatment available in these hospitals. Due to this information gap, we frequently get calls to our call centre.
Sir, you have successfully launched this app. Please enumerate the basic reasons behind launching this app and technical specifications of this app?
Almost 4 months back, we got this idea to make our services better by offering facilities to the poor and common man. For certain, they are not aware where to go due to lack of facilities, especially during emergencies. For example, in cardiac cases, with the right combination of doctors and treatment we can have the right result at the right time. Therefore, we now offer an app which when downloaded can give a lot of information in patients hands. On this app, our IT team and the TCS team worked together to create a multi- faceted app. Interestingly, now even the central government and other state governments want to launch such an app. We are proud to have launched it before the Government of India. We launched this app post research in Hyderabad and tribal areas, such as Utnoor and Bhadrachalam.
Aarogyasri Healthcare Trust Schemes
This app was launched on the World Health Day by Dr Charlakola Laxma Reddy, Honble Minister for Medical, Health & Family Welfare and Rajeswar Tiwari, IAS, Principal Secretary to Government, Medical & Health Department, who were instrumental in bringing this app for the people. On the Google Play Store, our app has been rated 4.6 on 5. We have seen so far around 1.5 lakh downloads. We have 2 crore Aarogyasri beneficiaries, 11 lakh employees and 80,000 journalists. This app is enabled with the tracking mechanism and provides a road map from the location of the patient to the hospital. One can approach the hospitals within a 10-km radius, which is really beneficial to both poor and during emergencies.
Another information available is the kind of specialities available. We can get details about hospitals operating for a specific speciality. These are very critical information available to the patient directly on the mobile to save lives. The availability of downloadable soft copy of health card will enable access to treatment even when the patient is not carrying card or does not remember the ID number. This is applicable for all schemes. Additionally, patients can know the status of approvals on their treatment. For any queries, they can directly contact the hospital. All frequently asked questions (FAQs) will be incorporated in this application and there will be no need of intermediaries. Even for registering complaints in case of denial of treatment, there is a section to register the details. In future, we are going to integrate the facility of booking of doctor service. Through the mobile, patients can book an appointment in a hospital. People can also send the feedback about the services provided in the hospital through this app. We are planning to introduce smart healthcare cards, which is an updated card that can enable any practitioners or doctors to access a patients health cards or medical history. The Telangana government is creating a database for all medical data to avoid carrying any physical copies. All diagnostic and major hospitals are being linked to this database.
So, now we are moving from e-governance to mobile-governance, according to the vision of our Prime Minister Narender Modi. Basically, this app aims to save lives in the golden hour, as in the last 1 hour many people succumb to injuries due to lack of information about hospitals, especially around the highways. Many people are suffering due to lack of information. With the facilities to access information related to treatment and provision to register complaints, patients will no longer suffer.
Mobile Application – Key Takeaways
Could you please throw light on how such an app is going to assist the state government in ensuring right patient monitoring?
We also plan to bring information in the local language. We have already instructed Aarogyamithras and the concerned people, who are the frontrunners stationed in the network hospitals, to immediately admit people who will show this app number. This app number makes a person eligible for treatment. Secondly, the treatment status and other details can be seen on the app, along with the provision to discuss the status with the medical officer or doctor. This way we can plug the problem immediately. Patients can also raise complaints immediately. We already have a lot many queries and complaints being raised. Within 1 hour, we have resolved more than 60 per cent of the complaints. We have also added the FAQ section. The most common complaint was money collection and the second common complaints were about service deficiency. We have a strong 104 service. We are nowadays calling Aarogyasri beneficiaries at the village level, mandal level and district level to understand their problems. We are putting a lot of banners and a lot of investment. Even in cinema halls, railways and in other public areas we are conducting campaigns. Apart from these, we are sending text messages to the beneficiaries. Every patients data is captured. Once the data captured, only then we issue the card. We have 30 per cent of casualties due to head injuries. With timely action, out of this 30 per cent nearly 40 to 50 per cent patients can be saved. Recently, the Telangana government has announced to go for one trauma centre for every 100 km.