Ankur Bhattacharya ; Kolkata,14 February: With a view to disseminating the ‘true information’ about the Central Government universal health scheme ‘Ayushman Bharat’ and how it can change the present scenario of India’s health insurance, a panel of eminent speakers here today expressed their views about how the present health insurance policies could help the common people.
Speaking at a seminar on ‘Health Insurance – Rethinking Business Models’, organised by the Eastern Chapter of the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) here today a panel a speakers comprising T.L. Alamelu, Member (Non-Life), IRDA,Henna Dhawan, Senior. OSD. Ayushman Bharat – Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana and Perminder Kaur, Director – East and North East, ASSOCHAM were unanimous in their views that the Indian Health insurance industry was currently in a state of rapid transition owing to multiple factors such as an increased focus on health care by the union Government and increased awareness about chronic diseases and their prevention methods.
Inaugurating the brain storming discussion Alamelu said accessible healthcare was the need of the hour. She claimed that Ayushman Bharat was a bold initiative taken by the Narendra Modi Government to shift from a segmented, sectoral approach towards healthcare services to a need-based and comprehensive one.
She said the scheme aimed to holistically address all aspects of healthcare, including prevention of diseases, promotion of healthcare facilities and ambulatory care, at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels.
Reiterating that the approach towards a total healthcare service for all Alamelu stated that in order to make the health insurance a much simpler issue from a complex one, the government had also brought out a common health insurance policy called Arogya Sanjeevani, which would have standardized terms and conditions. ‘Every insurer, in India should be offered this policy.” she said.
Also speaking on the occasion Dhawan said Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PM-JAY) or Ayushman Bharat Scheme had Rs. 5 lakh cover per year for every family and about 40 per cent of the country’s 1.3 billion population had already enjoyed its benefit totally free of cost.
Regretting that West Bengal was perhaps be the only state where Ayushman Bharat Scheme which was announced in 2018-19 Budget, was not being in use, Dhawan said the scheme had ‘a full proof beneficiary identification which primarily depends on the Aadhaar identification’.
‘The Ayushman Bharat scheme is an entitlement based scheme, where we have collected about 12 crore individual’s Aadhaar identifications and their mobile numbers and we keep sending them information”, Dhawan stated further and hoped that patients in West Bengal should also be included in to the scheme.
According to Perminder Kaur there was a urgent need to develop a proper framework to benefit the stakeholders. By organising similar such seminars and Health Insurance Conclaves the Insurance industry could put forward its agenda and try to solve them together, she said.