Employees State Insurance Corporation will expand its services to all 744 districts by December amid an increased beneficiary base after the implementation of the Social Security Code, Union Labour Minister Bhupender Yadav said on Thursday.
The code provides for coverage of informal workers (gig and platform workers) under the social security scheme ESI (health insurance) run by the Employees State Insurance Corporation (ESIC).
According to a labour ministry statement, Yadav, in his concluding address at ESIC ‘Chintan Shivir’ held at Surajkund, announced nearly a dozen outcomes of the deliberations.
He announced that ”ESIC will work to expand its services in all 744 districts of the country by December 2022. This expansion will take into consideration the increased beneficiary base, post implementation of Social Security Code”.
The minister stated that the outcomes of ESIC ‘Chintan Shivir’ will help in fulfilling the Prime Minister’s vision of ‘Swasthya Se Samridhi’ by bridging the gap between policy and execution. It will further prove a game changer and benefit all the Shram Yogis and their dependents in a big way, he said. The two-day ESIC ‘Chintan Shivir’ — first of its kind in the history of ESIC — concluded with landmark outcomes and far-reaching recommendations for expansion and improvement in the service delivery mechanism.
Another outcome or recommendation is about convergence with PMJAY (Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana) in all the districts of the country (where PMJAY is implemented) for better accessibility of services to beneficiaries, leading to pan-India portability.
It was also recommended that the Centers of Excellence for occupational health to be set up to promote indigenous research on occupational diseases in India.
Norms need to be revised for the sanctioning of new dispensaries and hospitals, keeping in consideration the latest technological advancements and future beneficiaries.
As per the suggestions, ESI Hospitals to work in a timebound manner for Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission (ABDM) compliance and adoption.
ESI will explore developing health facilities/medical colleges in the Aspirational districts of the country.
Mechanisms for better utilisation of under-utilised hospitals and services need to be evolved, including recruitment of clinical staff and access to the facility for the beneficiaries.
It was recommended to leverage ESIC hospitals for the expansion of PG (post-graduate) medical seats.
Capacity building is to be planned at three levels – individual, team and institutional levels by leveraging technology.
ESI Corporation decisions should be shared with all the stakeholders for effective implementation, leading to the involvement of field functionaries of ESIC.
ESIC should develop functional norms and standards for design and material to help develop concept plans for new projects for faster completion, it was suggested. Yadav also informed that the recommendations of ESIC ‘Chintan Shivir’ and other issues of the Ministry of Labour & Employment and EPFO will be taken up and discussed during the upcoming Labour Ministers’ Conference to be held at Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh, on August 25-26, 2022.