Delhi Government Refuses to Be Part of the Ayushman Bharat Scheme Of The Centre

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New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government of Delhi refused to be a part of the Ayushman Bharat scheme saying the Centre’s flagship national health protection scheme (NHPS) would not cover enough people. The state plans to work towards implementing its own health insurance scheme instead.

Ayushman Bharat, often referred to as ‘Modicare’, is expected to be launched by the Union government on August 15. It aims to provide health insurance cover of up to Rs 5 lakh to 500 million “poor and vulnerable” Indians. Under the scheme, the states will have to pay for 40% of the funds disbursed, while the Centre will contribute the rest.

“The state government does not agree with the Centre’s health insurance scheme because it is bound to exclude a majority of Delhi’s population who need it. The Delhi government will work towards implementing its own health insurance scheme,” Dr Kirti Bhushan, director general of health services, Delhi government, said on Friday.

“Under NHPS, the government will cover beneficiaries according to the socio-economic caste census of 2011. The population of Delhi is rapidly growing and greatly varies from what it was in 2011. So, providing insurance on the basis of that data will be a flawed practice,” he added. She also pointed out that 73.4% of all the households surveyed by SECC were for rural India, while Delhi only has 8% of rural population.

When contacted, Ayushman Bharat CEO Dr Indu Bhushan, however, said that the Delhi government hasn’t officially conveyed anything about not signing the scheme to her department. “I had a review meeting today, where I was told that Delhi would sign after their assembly session ends today,” he said.

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