Health Financing/Insurance

Health insurance focus poor women

A gender study by the labor ministry has showed that the government has generated greater demand of health insurance scheme by government. The women are targeted and are covered by the government because they tend to neglect their health due to financial reasons. The implementation of the rashtriya swasthya bima yojana, or RSBY, in its second year, it has seen the increased number of women which avail hospitalization. The present scheme provides cashless treatment up to 30,000 annually to a family of five members. The smart cards issued through private hospitals provide annual premium of 30. The plan is focused to only BPL families till now but has now extended to coolies, rickshaw pullers and miners. The director general in the labor and welfare department Anil Swarup mentioned the condition of poor women and her sufferings. There is a lot of medical treatment demand being expressed. In the first year the scheme allowed more female hospitalization than men when surveyed in 167 districts in 17 states. For the second year, only 9 districts have submitted the data, but the number shows significant increase with women who availed hospitalization through it. Mr. Swarup is positive with the data from other districts later this year showing immense improvisation for women. With increasing awareness, women now feel free and encouraged to go for treatments as the process is made simpler. They just have to swipe the card and avail facility without paying any additional amount. So far 23 million cards have been issued to poor families in 330 districts in 27 states. As per the national survey the access has improved to 2.6 percent after the completion of one year of implementation of RSBY.


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