Digital innovations in social health protection for India: Technical resource document

Countries across the world have been advancing towards Universal Health Coverage over the last few decades. Institutions of Social Health Insurance (SHI) have led the way in realizing the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 3 - “Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages”.

The International Labour Organization (ILO) focuses on social health protection as part of its larger goal of developing strong social protection systems to increase resilience, contribute to preventing poverty, unemployment and informality. The ILO lays special emphasis on the financial protection of vulnerable working populations accessing health services. We have been working with governments in combining health interventions with social protection measures, so that they can respond effectively to crisis such as the COVID-19.

As part of the ILO project, “Technical support to ESIS (Employees’ State Insurance Scheme) for improving and expanding access to health care services in India – A transition to formality”, in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the ILO has been supporting the Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) in India to strengthen its health services while increasing coverage and financial protection of working people in India.

This report titled ‘Digital Innovations in Social Health Protection for India’ is aimed at providing latest information and lessons from countries across the world to support the ESIC’s ongoing digital initiatives. This report should be seen more as a repository of relevant knowledge than a prescriptive document. It is expected to inform ongoing deliberations and reforms in key institutions such as the ESIC and other stakeholders working in this field.