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No referral needed for OPD services in empanelled hospitals: ESIC

Union Minister Santosh Kumar Gangwar. File   | Photo Credit: Ranjeet Kumar

Workers covered under the Employees’ State Insurance (ESI) scheme would not require a referral from an ESI dispensary or hospital to access out-patient care in empanelled hospitals if there is no ESI facility within a 10 km radius, the ESI Corporation (ESIC) said on Tuesday.

The ESIC in its meeting chaired by Labour and Employment Minister Santosh Kumar Gangwar on Monday took decisions to improve the healthcare provided to workers, an ESIC statement said. The ESIC had decided on January 7 that it would operate on its own all of its newly-constructed hospitals and those to be completed in future, unless State governments want to run them.

“Keeping in view the increase in ESI coverage over the recent years and the absence of the ESI’s own medical infrastructure in several areas, the ESI Corporation has now decided that in areas where ESI infrastructure is not available within a radius of 10 km, the beneficiary can avail medical consultation for OPD services directly from a hospital empanelled with ESIC or with Ayushman Bharat without the need for referral from an ESI dispensary or hospital,” the statement said.

The ESIC has a network of 1,520 dispensaries and 159 hospitals, of which 45 dispensaries and 49 hospitals are operated by it and the rest by the respective State governments, it said. There had been complaints of lack of equipment and doctors in the hospitals run by State governments, it added.

“ESIC will engage managers with specialisation in hospital management or hospital administration or health care administration for maintenance, housekeeping, patient assistance, patient safety and other ancillary activities in ESIC hospitals across the country,” the statement said.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2021 8:26:21 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/no-referral-needed-for-opd-services-in-empanelled-hospitals-esic/article33284036.ece

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