New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday launched the Ayushman Bharat scheme via video-conferencing to extend health insurance coverage to all residents of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Prime Minister's Office said the scheme will ensure universal health coverage, and focus on providing financial risk protection and ensuring quality and affordable essential health services to all individuals and communities.

"The scheme will ensure Universal Health Coverage and focus on providing financial risk protection and ensuring quality and affordable essential health services to all individuals and communities," the PMO said in a statement.

While interacting with a cancer patient Ramesh Lal from Jammu, who is a beneficiary of the scheme, during the launch, PM Modi said: “Ayushman Bharat has made your life ‘ayushman’. I urge you to tell everyone you meet about this scheme and its benefits.”

Union Home Minister Amit Shah and the Union Territory's Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha, also spoke on the occasion.

Amit Shah said that PM Modi wishes to see speedy development in Jammu and Kashmir and improvement in the standard of living of people. He presses that democracy should reach the grassroots levels and wishes peace and security for people of the state.

The scheme will provide free-of-cost insurance cover to all residents of the UT of Jammu and Kashmir, the PMO said, adding that it will extend financial cover of up to Rs 5 lakh per family on a floater basis to all residents of the UT.

There is provision for operational extension of the 'Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana' (PM-JAY) to approximately 15 lakh additional families, the PMO statement said, adding that the scheme will operate on insurance mode in convergence with PM-JAY.

The benefits of the scheme will be portable across the country. The hospitals empanelled under the PM-JAY scheme shall provide services under this scheme as well, the PMO said.

(With inputs from agency)