Virtual Conference

Pooja S

Consultant at Health & Family Welfare, India

Title: Road to Universal Health Coverage: Unique Model of Karnataka, India


In pursuit of the noble goal of achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC), Karnataka, a pioneer in healthcare within India, introduced the Arogya Karnataka scheme in March 2018. This revolutionary initiative was subsequently integrated with the Government of India's national health protection scheme, Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY), with the aim of providing financial protection to facilitate access to secondary and tertiary level curative care, fostering collaboration between the public and private sectors. AB-PMJAY presents a unique opportunity to enhance the health and well-being of hundreds of millions of Indians while mitigating a significant driver of poverty in the nation by preventing catastrophic healthcare costs.
This study seeks to delineate the distinctive features of Karnataka's implementation of AB-PMJAY-Arogya Karnataka (AB-PMJAY-ArK) and shed light on the state's pioneering efforts through this scheme. Karnataka stands out prominently due to its innovative approach, even within the integrated framework, which has the potential to address longstanding issues related to governance, quality assurance, and stewardship within the healthcare system. The holistic strategy employed by the AB-PMJAY-ArK cell, under the aegis of the Department of Health and Family Welfare, Government of Karnataka, has
substantially enhanced the performance of public healthcare institutions and strengthened the public health system, also serves as a replicable model for all Indian states. The transparency and accountability of this health system rely heavily on the timely and reliable availability of data in the public domain, a cornerstone of any monitoring process. Access to care, compliance, and prompt assistance have witnessed remarkable improvements, not only elevating national health indicators but also fortifying the foundation of a more robust public healthcare system on the path to achieving UHC.


Pooja S, a dynamic public health professional, holds a Master's in Public Health from MS Ramaiah University, Bangalore, India. Her journey is marked by an unwavering commitment to public health, now as a Consultant for Ayushman Bharat-PMJAY-Arogya Karnataka with the Department of Health and Family Welfare, Government of Karnataka.
From an early age, Pooja was driven by a passion for community service and healthcare. Her academic prowess led her to excel in health sciences and ultimately pursue her MPH degree. In her current role, she plays a pivotal role in expanding healthcare access through the Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY), particularly for the marginalized. Pooja S's passion for research has driven her to explore innovative solutions for health system strengthening. She has been actively involved in numerous research projects aimed at identifying bottlenecks and challenges in the healthcare system. Her research initiatives have contributed valuable insights to policymakers, helping them make informed decisions to enhance the quality of healthcare delivery. Her remarkable journey from a compassionate student to a consultant underscores her enduring dedication to public health, research, and her invaluable role in enhancing healthcare services for the people of Karnataka.