Health is our biggest asset, an opinion that has been strengthened and proven right by the global pandemic.
We live in a time where the number of health threats is relentlessly increasing each day and individuals are spending a lot on products to safeguard themselves from unfortunate situations.
The Indian and State governments are also investing heavily in strengthening the public healthcare system so all citizens, especially those who cannot afford to spend considerable amounts on private treatments, get benefits through these government health schemes.
The main aim of initiatives like the health insurance schemes are to make healthcare facilities available for all people at an affordable cost. Some of these projects have gained global recognition and are taken as case studies for the manner of implementation.
It is unpleasant to think of a medical emergency befalling on your loved ones. But life can be cruel and unpredictable regardless of your age. That is precisely why the importance of health insurance is essential to acknowledge.
1. Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY)
The Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) launched in 2018 is a centrally sponsored scheme jointly funded by the union government of India and the state government to provide free health insurance coverage for low-income earners in the country. With an estimated 50 crore beneficiaries under its wing, it is the world’s largest government medical insurance scheme.
The features of PMJAY include coverage of Rs 5 lakh per family per year for medical treatment, 3 days of pre-hospitalization and 15 days of post-hospitalization, reimbursement of diagnostic and medical expenses, etc.
2. Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY)
It is a central government health scheme launched in 2016 to enable more people to take insurance for accidents. For a premium of Rs 12/year per member in a family, it offers a life cover of Rs 2 lakhs and 1 lakh for loss of limb or eye. Anyone within the age of 18 to 70 years is eligible to be a part of this plan.
The primary objective of this scheme is to make an affordable insurance cover available for the general public in India at the lowest possible premium.
3. Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS)
This is one of India’s oldest health insurance schemes that the Govt of India launched to provide health insurance coverage to central government employees and pensioners. All high ranked government officials such as Members of Parliament, Governors, retired high court judges, Supreme court judges, Journalists, Freedom fighters, etc., are eligible to avail the benefits of this health insurance scheme that offers cashless treatments at preselected hospitals, outpatient treatments, reimbursements for emergency medical treatments undertaken at government or private hospitals.
4. Employees State Insurance Scheme (ESIC)
The ESIC was implemented in the year 1950 by the government of India, primarily for the workers to provide them with health coverage and protect them against health-related complications such as permanent or temporary disablement, sickness, death due to employment injury or occupational disease, etc., that might lead to loss of income for their family.
With over 3 crore beneficiaries registered under ESIC, the scheme provides several benefits.
5. Universal Health Insurance Scheme (UHIS)
The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare launched the UHIS in 2003 throughout the country to offer affordable healthcare and manage the medical expenses of the underprivileged.
An individual and his family members are eligible to be part of this insurance scheme who are covered for their medical expenses, maternity, room rent, doctor’s consultation fee, medical supplies, etc. If a family member gets hospitalized, their medical expenses are covered up to Rs. 30,000.
6. Aam Aadmi Bima Yojana (AABY)
It aims to cover all individuals between 18 and 59 years of age. Citizens living in urban as well as rural areas can avail this government health insurance scheme.
One of the key benefits of the AABY scheme is that it offers scholarships to underprivileged children. Under this scheme, the head of the family or the main bread-earner is protected for all the medical necessities.
7. Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana
The Ministry of Labour and Employment launched the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana for the healthcare facilities of the working class and laborers in the unorganized sector. It aims to cover them financially for all sorts of medical needs.
Not just the policyholder, but up to 5 family members can be enrolled under the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana. It offers coverage for medical emergencies in case of accidents and also for general sickness of the laborers.
Apart from these centrally funded schemes, there are many state government health schemes that each state government runs for residents of those states. Let’s take a look at some such schemes specific to the Rajasthan Government.
The Rajasthan government’s focus on the health sector has taken the state to top position in the country in regard to health insurance coverage.
- Chiranjeevi Health Insurance Scheme or Mukhyamantri Chiranjeevi Swasthya Bima Yojana
Under the Chiranjeevi Health Insurance Scheme, the Rajasthan government offers cashless medical insurance of up to Rs 10 lakh. More than 13.5 million families are registered with it.
The scheme is free for those covered under the National Food Security Act, families eligible under the Socio-Economic Caste Census (SECC-2011), contractual workers (all departments/boards/corporations/government companies), Covid-19 ex-gratia, and small and marginal farmers.
Others who do not fall in these categories pay a premium of Rs 850 per family.
So far, over 755 private and around 800 public hospitals are empaneled under this scheme. Even the treatment packages in this scheme have been increased to over 1,625 and expensive treatment such as liver transplants, heart transplants, kidney transplants, bone marrow transplants, cochlear implants, knee replacement, and hip replacement have been included or covered.
Recently, the Rajasthan government has also launched the Mukhyamantri Chiranjeevi Accident Insurance Scheme to provide economic support to the families insured with the Mukhyamantri Chiranjeevi Swasthya Bima Yojana in the case of death or permanent disability due to an accident.
Government health insurance schemes are desirable, primarily because they are available at a fraction of the costs when compared to private plans. The above-listed options are some of the most popular government-backed medical coverage facilities available to people, who cannot afford one otherwise.