NIKSHAY is the web-enabled patient management system for TB control as part of the National Tuberculosis Elimination Program (NTEP). It is developed and maintained by the Central TB Division (CTD) of the Department of Health and Family Welfare of the Government of India in collaboration with the National Tuberculosis Elimination Program (NTEP), Informatics Center (NIC) and the World Health Organization Country Office for India.
NIKSHAY is used by health officials at various levels across the country, both in the public and private sectors, to register cases in their care, order various types of tests in laboratories across the country, record treatment details, monitor treatment compliance and refer cases between healthcare providers. It also acts as a national TB surveillance system and allows for the transmission of various surveillance data to the Indian government.
NIKSHAY’s innovative IT application enables entry-level healthcare providers to track every TB patient. The most important feature of NIKSHAY is that it promotes the use of IT at the Tuberculosis Unit (TU) level. Narrowing the digital divide. With a message from the Deputy Director-General, CTD, a video-based training module was developed in Hindi and English highlighting the importance of NIKSHAY in eradicating TB in India.
NIKSHAY has been implemented at the national, state, district and TB levels. unit levels. Data entry related to TB patient registration, pre-treatment and follow-up testing, treatment, HIV and contact tracing details is done at the UT level. Since its launch in June 2012, more than 3.5 lakh TB patients have been registered. This TB patient database is used at the county, state, and national levels for surveillance purposes.
NIKSHAY uses SMS technology effectively. It communicates via SMS with TB patients and healthcare providers at the grassroots level, as well as with health and family policymakers, health managers and health administrators at various levels of the healthcare system. If the patient is registered with NIKSHAY, an SMS will be sent to the patient with the registration ID and details of the DOTS operator along with a warning to take the medication regularly.
A daily SMS will be sent to all surveillance agencies in CTD, State TB Officers, District TB Officers (DTO) detailing the number of registered patients, Designated Microscopy Center (DMC)/Peripheral Health Interface (PHI), profiles of STOs, DTOs and TUs updated, contract workers, registered healthcare facilities and patients have been notified.
Directly observed treatment (DOT) providers and private healthcare providers who receive cash benefits would need to present patients’ Aadhaar cards to claim cash assistance. However, government officials involved with the state’s TB program assured that it would not create barriers for TB patients to receive free diagnosis and treatment facilities.
Currently, a DOT provider including accredited village social health activists (Asha) receives a fee of Rs. 1,000 for each TB patient and Rs. 1,500 for each elderly patient who has mid-restart their medication. Any family member of the patient can become the family DOT provider and be eligible to receive Rs 1,000 and Rs 1,500 in fees.
DOT providers must ensure that tuberculosis patients receive medication promptly. Private healthcare providers are also paid Rs 100 for each notification and Rs 400 for each patient who completes treatment.