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Patna : Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan on September 1, 2019, said the the CGHS services, which started in 1954 from Gol Market in Delhi, was extended to as many as 71 cities  in the last five years under the NDA Government.

“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 PM Narendra Modi can be clearly seen. We are aggressively witnessing reforms in every area of the health sector,” said Dr Harsh Vardhan  at the inauguration of the state-of-the-art CGHS Bhawan in Sector 13 of R K Puram in New Delhi on September 1 in the presence of  Meenakshi Lekhi, Member of Parliament, New Delhi.

Dr Vardhan also launched the new scheme of Annual Health Check-up of CGHS beneficiaries who are pensioners of the age 75 years and above. He 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 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,” he said. 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.

Dr 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, according to a PIB release.

“Under Ayushman Bharat, 1,50,000 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 23, 2018, several events are being planned across the country to commemorate the occasion,” Dr 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.

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