This is the world’s largest Government-funded health care programme which was launched on 23 September 2018 in Ranchi. It covers over 50 crore beneficiaries. This is expected to have a far-reaching impact on the country’s health care and insurance landscape. National Health Protection Mission will have a defined benefit cover of 5 lakh per family per year. Beneficiaries can avail benefits in both public and private institutions.

 There are two flagship initiatives under this scheme:

                     1. Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJY): Under this programme, 1.5  health sub-centres being converted into health and wellness centres.1200 crore has been allocated for this flagship programme. The scheme covers more than 10 crores poor and vulnerable, families.

                    2. National Health Protection Scheme: This will cover more than 10 crores poor and vulnerable, families. This will provide coverage up to 5 lakh rupees per family per year for secondary and tertiary care hospitalisation.

Challenges:       

              *Implementation and governance of the scheme

              *Profitability motives of private hospitals.

              *Budget allocation of 2000 crore doesn’t serve the purpose.

              *The scheme is far from universal health coverage. It excludes 80 crore which is 60% of the whole Indian population.

Way forward:

         *Insurance covers alone will not improve the health system.

          *There is a need to build robust health care infrastructure in the remotest corners of the country where the people have easy access.

           *Budget allocation need to be increased to realise the purpose of the scheme.

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