New Delhi, May 27 (PTI) Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday formally launched an online medical consultation platform to facilitate hassle-free health services for armed forces' personnel, veterans and their families.
Singh said the online outpatient platform will ensure widespread access to quality health services in remote areas besides reducing the load on the hospitals.
'This is a very important step taken at a very critical time for the health of service personnel,' the defence minister said launching the service at a virtual event.
The defence ministry said the services can be availed by registering on the website https:ehatopd.in/.
The trial version of the platform was made functional in August last year and over 6,500 medical consultations have been already carried out through it.
The defence minister said the 'SeHAT OPD' portal reflected the government's commitment to 'Digital India' and 'e-governance'.
'It has always been our endeavour to provide better, faster and transparent facilities to our countrymen,' he said describing the launch of the portal as a great example of innovation, especially at a time when the nation is fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.
Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat, Army Chief Gen M M Naravane and Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh were among those who attended the event.
'The defence minister urged the armed forces’ medical services to consider adding specialist doctors to this portal and incorporating the service of delivery of medicines to the homes of the service personnel,' the ministry said.
Referring to the coronavirus crisis, Singh said the second wave was not only unpredictable but more dangerous than the first one.
He said the armed forces have contributed significantly in the country's efforts to combat the pandemic.
Singh said the central government has been constantly monitoring the situation and making efforts to improve the supply of medicines, medical oxygen and other equipment through high-level committees and a group of ministers.
The defence minister also talked about the anti-COVID oral drug 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG) developed by the Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS), a leading laboratory of the DRDO, in collaboration with Dr Reddy's Laboratories (DRL), Hyderabad.
He said the drug has yielded good results.
The Drugs Controller General of India (DGCI) approved the drug for emergency use as an adjunct therapy in moderate to severe coronavirus patients earlier this month.
'I am happy that 10,000 sachets of the drug are coming to the market today,' Singh said.
The drug comes in powder form in sachets and is taken orally by dissolving it in water. PTI MPB AQS AQS