New Delhi, April 12 : Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the first health and wellness centre under the flagship Ayushman Bharat programme in Chhattisgarh's Bijapur district on Saturday, an official said here.
While the government plans to open 1.5 lakh such centres by 2022, NITI Aayog member V.K.
Paul said, of these, 15,000 centres -- equipped to treat a host of communicable and non-communicable diseases -- would be opened by the end of this year.
"The Ayushman Bharat has two pillars.
The first is to create a network of health and wellness centres to deliver comprehensive primary healthcare to the community, and the second is to provide insurance cover to 40 per cent of India's population for secondary and tertiary care," he told reporters on Thursday.
Paul said while the first pillar would be formally kicked off on Saturday with the opening of the first comprehensive primary healthcare centre, the government was also working towards expeditious implementation of the second pillar or the National Health Protection Scheme.
NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said Bijapur has made "spectacular progress" in health, nutrition, education and creation of livelihood opportunities.
"This is why the Prime Minister has chosen to visit Bijapur on the birth anniversary of Baba (B.R.) Ambedkar as he had promised earlier."
Modi, while launching the aspirational districts programme in January, promised to visit the district which showed the most noteworthy performance.
As per the incremental performance ranking of aspirational districts, Bahraich (Uttar Pradesh) came on top followed by Bijapur and Mewat (Rajasthan).
Kant said Bijapur was chosen for the Prime Minister's visit over Bahraich because it had a "better action plan for its transformation".
The assembly elections in Chhattisgarh are due later this year.
During his visit, the Prime Minister will interact with people and officials of the district administration who at the epicentre of Left Wing Extremism have performed well.
The aspirational district programme, which covers about 15 per cent of India's population, hinges on expeditiously transforming 115 districts that were identified from 28 states.
There will be a dynamic ranking of performance of districts on objective and measurable indicators.