A month after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation to fight black money menace, and consequently causing grave trouble to patients at hospitals, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has directed government hospitals to adopt digital payment facilities for patients’ convenience.
In an advisory issued by the ministry, joint secretary Manoj Jhalani said it is important that government health facilities are fully equipped to receive user charges in a digital manner, including mobile transactions. It has been sent to all state additional chief secretaries and principal secretaries of health department.
Following demonetisation announcement made by PM Modi on November 8, 2016, wherein he declared 500 and 1,000 rupees denomination as illegal, India witnessed chaos in every sector. While government hospitals were allowed to accept 500 and 1,000 rupees currency, many ran out of cash, causing inconvenience to patients across the country.
“You are therefore, requested to take all necessary steps to operationalise such facilities of receiving digital payments in our hospitals at the earliest so that the patients are not inconvenienced,” stated the advisory sent to state administrations across the country.
Government has been laying stress on digital and cashless mode of transactions. In its attempt to introduced digital system quickly, Government of India has constituted a committee to enable 100 per cent conversion of government– citizen transactions to digital platform. The committee, under the leadership of National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog) CEO Amitabh Kant, will identify and implement user-friendly digital payment options in all sectors of the economy in the fastest possible time frame.