A meeting with ECHS users, chaired by the MD ECHS took place on 20 Aug 2010. Attendance included IESM reps (Gen Satbir and Col RP Chaturvedi), reps of Naval Hq,and Air Hq/ AFA. Dy MD ECHS was also present. Major updates that may be of interest to the ESM community are given below:
The MD appraised us about the refinements being planned in ECHS services. These had been also discussed in his recent meeting with the RM. A definitive time frame for implementation was not given out.
199 additional ECHS Polyclinics, including 17 mobile ones, have been approved and would be set up gradually.
ECHS services are being extended to Gurkha pensioners. However NO polyclinics are planned in Nepal.
The LP limits of Polyclinics are being enhanced to Rs2 lac for Class A polyclinics and 1 lac for Class B.
Outsourcing of Pharmacy services is broadly acceptable. A pilot project would shortly be launched in Delhi, Pune, Hyderabad and Kochi.
Case for Outsourcing of Bills Clearance Processes is under consideration. In the meantime, simplifications including raising CFA powers at intervening Hq, are being adopted to speed up bill clearances.
Case for authorization of ECHS hospitals is being taken up. Funds allocated by the GOI, have so far been completely received by ECHS before end of the FY without cuts. Some points brought out by attendees are as under:
Gen Satbir while appreciating the fact that funds were being received in toto, suggested that it be ensured that MOD made these funds available in time, rather than at the eleventh hour, to ensure its optimal expenditure.
Col Chaturvedi enquired about the action taken on Military Tribunal verdict dated 9 Mar 2010, on grant of ECHS facilities to family members of recruits boarded out with disabiity pension (case #TA 653/2009 and TA 665/2009). Dy MD informed that it has been taken up with their legal cell to seek an opinion before issue of implementation instructions. An early action on this was requested to ECHS.
Cde Lakshminarayan, Naval HQ, brought out that while an impression existed that ECHS was not paying empaneled hospitals in time, resulting in their opting out of the scheme, in most such cases, the 'non- payment' referred to 'overcharges' by the hospitals. This none the less was giving ECHS a bad name. With Warm Regards, Col RP Chaturvedi (Retd) IESM ECHS CELL
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