Brain Booster for UPSC & State PCS Examination (Topic: NITI Aayog - Vision 2035 - Public Health Surveillance)

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Topic: NITI Aayog - Vision 2035 - Public Health Surveillance

NITI Aayog - Vision 2035 - Public Health Surveillance

Why in News?

  • NITI Aayog has released a white paper: Vision 2035: Public Health Surveillance in India on 14th December 2020.


  • Vision 2035: Public Health Surveillance in India is a continuation of the work on health systems strengthening.
  • It contributes by suggesting mainstreaming of surveillance by making individual electronic health records the basis for surveillance. Public health surveillance (PHS) is an important function that cuts across primary, secondary, and tertiary levels of care. Surveillance is ‘Information for Action’
  • The white paper lays out India’s vision 2035 for public health surveillance through the integration of the three-tiered public health system into Ayushman Bharat.
  • It also spells out the need for expanded referral networks and enhanced laboratory capacity.
  • The building blocks for this vision are an interdependent federated system of governance between the Centre and states, a new data-sharing mechanism that involves the use of new analytics, health informatics, and data science.

Vision 2035

  • To make India’s public health surveillance system more responsive and predictive to enhance preparedness for action at all levels.
  • Citizen-friendly public health surveillance system will ensure individual privacy and confidentiality, enabled with a client feedback mechanism.
  • Improved data-sharing mechanism between Centre and states for better disease detection, prevention, and control.
  • India aims to provide regional and global leadership in managing events that constitute a public health emergency of international concern.

Building on Ayushman Bharat Scheme

  • This vision document on India’s Public Health Surveillance by 2035 builds on opportunities that include the Ayushman Bharat scheme that establishes health and wellness centers at the community levelto strengthen non-communicable disease prevention, detection, and control and assures government payment for hospitalization- to reduce out of pocket expenses of individuals and families at the bottom of the pyramid.
  • It builds on initiatives such as the Integrated Health Information Platform of the Integrated Disease Surveillance Program.
  • It aligns with the citizen-centricity highlighted in the National Health Policy, 2017 and the National Digital Health Blueprint. It encourages the use of mobile and digital platforms and point of care devices and diagnostics for amalgamation of data capture and analyses.
  • It highlights the importance of capitalizing on initiatives such as the Clinical Establishments Act to enhance private sector involvement in surveillance.
  • It points out the importance of a cohesive and coordinated effort of apex institutions including the National Centre for Disease Control, the Indian Council of Medical Research, and others. As well, there may be a need to create an independent Institute of Health Informatics.

Lessons Learnt

  • Multiple disease outbreaks have prompted India to proactively respond with prevention and control measures. These actions are based on information from public health surveillance.
  • India was able to achieve many successes in the past. Smallpox was eradicated and polio was eliminated. India has been able to reduce HIV incidence and deaths and advance and accelerate TB elimination efforts.
  • Many outbreaks of vector-borne diseases, acute encephalitis syndromes, acute febrile illnesses, diarrhoeal and respiratory diseases have been promptly detected, identified, and managed.
  • These successes are a result of effective communitybased, facility-based, and health system-based surveillance. The program response involved multiple sectors, including public and private health care systems and civil society.
  • The COVID19 pandemic has further challenged the country. India rapidly ramped up its diagnostic capabilities and aligned its digital technology expertise. This ensured that there was a comprehensive tracking of the pandemic.