Medical Colleges Asked by Medical Education Regulator to Make ABHA IDs Compulsory for Patients

Medical Colleges
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The medical education regulator has mandated that all medical colleges require Ayushman Bharat Health Accounts (ABHA) – or digital IDs – for patient consultations. This directive aims to enable patients to “share and access their health records digitally” and to allow for a more accurate assessment of patient volumes at medical colleges.

Starting from the academic year 2025-26, the new assessment criteria for medical colleges will be based on the number of patients registered through their ABHA IDs. Nearly 700 medical colleges, both private and government, must comply with this directive from the National Medical Commission (NMC).

The ABHA ID initiative, part of the Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission (ABDM), is being implemented by the National Health Authority (NHA). To date, over 622 million ABHA IDs have been created nationwide.

From the 2025-26 academic year onward, all decisions regarding medical colleges—such as increasing undergraduate and postgraduate course seats, annual renewals, and NMC recognition—will be based on patient registrations through these digital health IDs.

In a communication, Dr. B. Srinivas, Secretary of the NMC, stated, “The NMC in its 14th meeting held on May 1, 2024, decided that all medical colleges must ensure ABHA ID as a prerequisite for registering patients visiting OPD/IPD/emergency services in the hospitals attached to them. All patients must have registration done with ABHA ID in addition to the hospital’s registration number.”

Dr. Srinivas emphasized that the creation of an ABHA ID is a simple process that can be easily facilitated with an Aadhaar card, which is widely available. He also clarified, “No patient should be denied treatment without an ABHA ID.”

“For decisions in the assessment for the academic year 2025-26 and thereafter, only the patient and related clinical material authenticated with ABHA ID will be counted.”

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