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Budget 2016: Government mulls medical insurance cover for all
Budget 2016: Government mulls medical insurance cover for all
Mar 01, 2016 | 148 VIEWS
On the heels of a national crop insurance scheme for farmers, comes another proposal by the government towards for universal healthcare coverage. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in his budget speech declared the launch of a scheme to provide a health insurance cover of Rs 1 lakh per family and an additional top-up of Rs 30,000 for senior citizens aged 60 or above. The scheme will target those living the below poverty line. 

Industry experts have hailed the move as something that will increase insurance penetration in the country. Jaitley cited “catastrophic health shocks as cause of unforeseen out-of-pocket healthcare expenditure which pushes lacks of households below the poverty line every year” as the main reason behind the government’s move to provide this health cover for BPL families. 

The details of the scheme such as eligibility conditions, scope of coverage of pre-existing diseases and cashless network.  Currently, Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana, which provides for hospitalisation coverage is the only government-run healthcare insurance scheme which covers those living below the poverty line. 

This is an important step that will reduce the healthcare burden of families and especially senior people given the runaway healthcare inflation that has made access to healthcare highly unreachable for a large section of the population. 

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