Staff Reporter

Thiruvananthapuram: The National Rural Health Mission, Government of India, in partnership with ICICI has introduced e-banking in health care services in Kerala. The initiative will rely on ICICI bank's `Health I-Check Pay' software to speed up and simplify fund movements, monitor fund utilisation and provide better transparency in financial transactions in the workings of the Health Ministry.

The `Health I-Check Pay' will enable the Health and Family Welfare Ministry to: facilitate electronic flow of funds from the Centre to the State, the State to districts and from districts to beneficiaries such as primary health centres. It will help maintain an MIS (information database) of online transactions at the Centre, State and district-level. Permit secure multi-user access over the Internet. Manage a query-based module to generate customer disbursement and fund utilisation reports.

The web-based solution being implemented in the State is an integral part of the National Rural Health Mission. ICICI bank says the system will ensure foolproof access and transaction in a secure environment besides faster and simpler fund management and also facilitate compliance with the Ministry of Finance directive for remitting funds from the Centre to the States within 48 hours. The service will soon be implemented in the health care services in Gujarat, Rajasthan, Delhi and Punjab.

Inaugurating India's first `Health I-Check Pay system recently, Minister for Health P.K. Sreemathy highlighted the relevance of e-banking solutions at a time when technology is being harnessed to facilitate speedy, transparent and corruption-less governance.