Ayushman Bharat Card vs Health ID Card

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 09/10/2023

In an effort to better serve its citizens, the government of India has implemented several healthcare initiatives.

The Ayushman Bharat card and ABHA or Health ID card are the initiatives taken by the government to facilitate better healthcare services under the Ayushman Bharat scheme and the Ayushman Bharat Health Account (ABHA) programme, respectively.

Each initiative serves a distinct goal. While the Ayushman Bharat is a welfare initiative to offer Medicare to the low-income groups of the country, the Ayushman Bharat Health Account (ABHA) offers centralised digital access to all medical records of the beneficiary.

The respective cards - Ayushman Bharat Card and health ID (ABHA card) - are offered by the governments to the registered beneficiaries to allow them to enjoy the applicable benefits of each scheme.

The differences between the ABHA card and the Ayushman card are explained in this blog.

What is the Ayushman Bharat Card

The Ayushman Bharat Yojana or the Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) is a health initiative by the Government of India to provide necessary Medicare facilities to families who belong to lower-income groups. The scheme was launched in September 2018.

It aims to offer better healthcare to the economically challenged section of society. There are around 50 crore beneficiaries in this scheme after its inception.

Those enrolled under this scheme get the e-card, also known as the Ayushman Bharat Card, to avail the services in private and government hospitals nationwide. The Government of India subsidises the scheme and provides cashless treatment to individuals.

What is the ABHA Health ID Card

ABHA, or Ayushman Bharat Health Account, was launched under the Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission (ABDM) by the Government of India. This scheme was launched in September 2021 to digitise the healthcare ecosystem.

Earlier, called the health ID card, the ABHA card makes accessing healthcare facilities safe and secure for everyone with an ABHA account.

Individuals enrolling on the ABHA scheme will get a unique 14-digit healthcare identification number. It will help manage all their medical records, history, diagnostic, etc., online on a centralised platform.

Further, healthcare practitioners, insurance providers, etc., can access patient medical history and reports with their consent for further treatment. It makes accessing medical records easy with no need to maintain paper records.

Any Indian national can access the ABHA card irrespective of their income. There is no bar for income for enrolling in this scheme.

Significant Difference Between the ABHA Card vs the Ayushman Card

The significant difference between ABHA cards vs Ayushman cards is their target audience.

ABHA cards, also known as health IDs, provide a centralised online directory for keeping medical records such as prescriptions, diagnoses, etc. The purpose is to ease accessing and sharing the health records.

While the Ayushman card online is available for individuals who belong to the economically weaker section, the e-card helps them get cashless treatment in government and private hospitals.

Some of the other prominent differences between the ABHA card and vs Ayushman card are:

Parameters ABHA card  Ayushman Card
Purpose To make access and sharing of medical records easy. Cashless healthcare benefits and services to beneficiaries.
Income group Eligible for all Indian nationals. Eligible for economically weaker income groups.
Benefits Unique 14-digit healthcare identity. Cashless and free medical treatment.
Eligibility All Indian Nationals Identified in SECC
Coverage Unlimited access to medical accounts. Up to Rs.5 lakh per family per year
Enrollment Voluntarily Mandatory for valid beneficiaries

Ayushman Bharat Card Benefits

Let's focus on the benefits of Ayushman Card online download.

  • The e-card benefits the economically challenged section of society to access better healthcare services.

  • This card will provide eligibility for primary, secondary and tertiary medical benefits.

  • Further, this e-card will cover the medical expenses of 3 days pre-hospitalisation and 15 days post-hospitalisation.

  • Besides this, the government scheme covers OT expenses, 1400 medical procedures, etc.

  • Lastly, individuals will get medical coverage of 5 lakhs rupees per annum.

ABHA Health Card Benefits

Let's cast light on Abha Health Card benefits.

  • It helps in creating unique and trustable 14-digit ID within the healthcare ecosystem.

  • Individuals will get access to healthcare benefits the government offers within their linked ABHA ID.

  • Many other bodies, such as Ayurveda, Unani, homoeopathy, etc., accept the ABHA card.

  • The ABHA account will store all the patient medical information, history, diagnosis, etc.

  • With PHR sign-up, sharing health data with insurance providers, health practitioners, etc., is easy.

Applying for an Ayushman Bharat Card

Getting an Ayushman Bharat Card is an easy process. Before applying for an e-card, you need to pass the eligibility criteria. It is only available for lower-income groups. You need to follow the necessary **Steps to check your eligibility.

Step 1: Scroll to the official website of the National Health Authority.

Step 2: After the website loads, click on the "Am I Eligible" option.

Step 3: It will redirect to another page, where you need to enter your mobile number and captcha code to generate OTP.

Step 4: Once the OTP is entered, provide further details, such as ration card number, household number, name, state, etc.

Step 5: After verifying the details, the portal will give a response. The name will appear in the list if you are a valid candidate for the Ayushman card.

To download the Ayushman Bharat card, follow these Steps:

Step 1: Visit the PMJAY official website.

Step 2: Further, click on the "Menu" option in the upper right corner of the website.

Step 3: Under the portal section, click "Beneficiary Identification System (BIS)."

Step 4: Further, click on the "Download Ayushman card" option.

Step 5: Next, choose the option" Aadhar card".

Step 6: Fill out the asked details such as scheme, state, etc., check the declaration box and generate OTP.

Step 7: After entering OTP, click on the verify option.

Step 8: Once the verification is done, click the "Ayushman Card Download" option.

Applying for an ABHA Card

Applying for an ABHA national health authority card or health ID is optional. It can be applied online and offline. The following procedure needs to be followed to get an ABHA card.

Step 1: Head to the ABDM official site.

Step 2: Scroll to the "Create ABHA Number" option.

Step 3: Register for the ABHA number using a driving licence or Aadhar card.

Step 4: Choose the convenient option and click the "Next" button.

Step 5: Fill out the details, check the consent box, enter the captcha, and click the "Next" button".

Step 6: Further, the OTP will be sent to the number. Enter it and click on the "Next" button.

Step 7: Fill out the details as the portal asks and click the "Submit" option to create an ABHA number.

Need for Integrating ABHA Card with Health Insurance Plan

ABHA card is the centralised access to all your health records. Managing and sharing health records, such as medical history, lab tests, diagnosis, etc., will be a walk in the park with an ABHA account. Individuals don't need to maintain the physical copies as everything will be stored digitally.

ABHA cards also allow individuals with their medical insurance plan to ease out the claim process. Almost everybody prefers a health insurance plan since medical expenses can be expensive. A health insurance plan provides financial security at the hard times and offers top-notch health services. The medical insurance scheme has many benefits, such as maternity coverage, health insurance tax benefits, vaccination cover, etc.

By integrating ABHA cards with medical insurance plans, policyholders don't have to worry about providing physical records at the time of settlement. Insurance companies will have access to the policyholder's medical history and expenses, making the settlement easy.

Tata AIG is a reputable insurance agency offering catered health insurance plans to individuals based on their needs. We at Tata AIG have tied up with 7,200 hospitals across India for cashless treatment.


In this blog, we have provided a detailed understanding of both the Ayushman Bharat card and the Health or ABHA card. The government of India launched both schemes for the betterment of society but with different purposes. Ayushman Bharat card focuses on making healthcare affordable to everyone with their benefits. The ABHA card makes storing and managing health records easy.


Are health ID cards and Ayushman cards the same?

No, the health ID creates a unique 14-digit ID for individuals to manage their medical records in the healthcare ecosystem. In contrast, the Ayushman card provides healthcare services to lower-income groups.

What is the difference between the Ayushman card and the golden card?

With the Ayushman Golden card, individuals can avail the cashless treatment in specified government and private hospitals anywhere in India.

What is the difference between Ayushman Bharat and PMJAY?

Ayushman Bharat Yojana, a.k.a. the Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY), is a government-funded scheme that started to offer better healthcare services to economically challenged groups.

Disclaimer / TnC

Your policy is subjected to terms and conditions & inclusions and exclusions mentioned in your policy wording. Please go through the documents carefully.

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