The Government on Tuesday launched a health service called SEHAT (Social Endeavour for Health And Telemedicine) along with Apollo Hospitals, which will connect 60,000 Common Service Centres (CSCs) across the country to a common network.

This will provide healthcare access to millions of citizens irrespective of geographical location or connectivity through the CSCs.

The Minister for Communications and IT, Ravi Shankar Prasad, who inaugurated the service, said quality and affordable healthcare is one of the emerging needs of citizens in rural areas.

CSC SPV and Apollo have come together to address this issue and design a workable solution. CSC has been delivering tele-consultation services with support from Apollo and Medanta in some areas and now with this initiative the tele-consultation services are being extended to 60,000 CSCs across the country, he said.

CSCs will also provide diagnostic services and promote sale of generic drugs through collaboration with the Ministry of Health – by setting up of the ‘Jan Aasudhi Stores’, Prasad said.

“With the availability of tele-consultation, diagnostic facilities and generic drugs stores, we can redefine the extension of affordable and quality healthcare to the citizens, especially in rural India, and hope that this will become a game changer not only for India but also exemplary for other countries across the globe,” he added.

“Through our Prime Minister’s ‘Digital India’ initiative more Indians shall get access to e-services and we are delighted to be a partner with the GoI in this path-breaking endeavour to link SEHAT to 60,000 CSCs,” Prathap C Reddy, Chairman, Apollo Hospitals, said.