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National Health Authority Invites Comments on Consultation Paper on Unified Health Interface

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The National Health Authority (NHA) on Friday released a consultation paper on the Unified Health Interface (UHI), which is intended to be an open, interoperable platform to connect all digital health solutions.

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The consultation paper provides an overview of the proposed design, scope and role of UHI. In light of the upcoming national rollout of NDHM, comments from the public are invited to ensure that UHI is designed and developed in a collaborative and consultative manner, NHA said in a press statement.

With UHI, NDHM said that it aims to transform the way digital health services are rendered in India. Presently, patients and healthcare providers need to be on the same application to avail and provide digital health services, respectively. It is envisioned that the open network created by UHI will serve as the digital infrastructure for patients and healthcare providers to engage in the discovery, booking, payment and fulfilment of a variety of digital health services across applications.

The services include but are not limited to teleconsultation and the discovery of pharmacies and hospitals. Over time, the services enabled by the platform will evolve with the market ecosystem. UHI is designed to be similar to the UPI (Unified Payments Interface) ecosystem which has emerged for digital payments, it added.

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Since the launch of the pilot of NDHM in August 2020 in six union territories, multiple rounds of consultations with different groups of stakeholders have been held for the various building blocks to discuss the design and adoption. NDHM will continue the engagement with stakeholders and ensure that development is inclusive, and that diverse viewpoints are incorporated from concerned stakeholders.

“NDHM is endeavouring to make digital public goods for the healthcare industry to make it more accessible, affordable and efficient. To facilitate this, we are taking a consultative approach to develop the National Digital Health Ecosystem. We have come up with the concept of UHI, designed on similar lines as UPI, which has revolutionized digital payments and the financial sector. To enable inclusivity and widen the perspectives on the table, I urge all stakeholders to go through the shared consultation papers and provide us with their valuable feedback, Dr R S Sharma, CEO, NHA said in the statement.

NHA will also organise a public webinar on UHI to explain the consultation paper on August 4, 2021, from 3 PM onwards. The links will be shared on the NDHM website https://ndhm.gov.in/.

Also, the full text of the consultation paper is available for download on NDHM’s website at https://ndhm.gov.in/publication/consultationpapers. Comments and feedback can be uploaded on the same link or can be emailed to ndhm@nha.gov.in till August 23, 2021.

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