New Delhi, Mar 21, 2018 : Union Cabinet on Monday approved the launch of Ayushman Bharat - National Health Protection Mission - which is slated to cover over ten crore poor families (approximately 50 crore people) and provide coverage of upto 5 lakh rupees.
It also approves the continuation of the National Health Mission.
NHPM enables beneficiaries to avail of health facilities from any part of the country and will be a paperless and cashless treatment.
As per the government, various measures like identity validation through Aadhaar, cost control etc, make NHPM easily accessible and transparent in approach. On the other hand, it’s upto to the states to decide whether they want to implement the mission in trust mode, insurance company mode or mixed model.
Hailing NHPM, Union Health Minister JP Nadda said, "I am heartily thankful to PM Narendra Modi and Union Cabinet for approving National Health Protection Mission. It is one of the world’s largest public health programs. A visionary step towards advancing the agenda of universal health coverage."
He added, "NHPM will leverage on Comprehensive Primary Health Care through Health and Wellness Centres (HWCs) for providing universal health coverage and make health services equitable, affordable and accessible. It will benefit the poorest and the needy."
The scheme was approved in the Union Budget 2018 by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley wherein it was said that under the flagship National Health Protection Scheme a sum of upto Rs 5,00,000 would be provided to 10 crore poor families in India per year and was expected to reach around 50 crore beneficiaries and would ill be used for secondary and tertiary care hospitalisation.
Also, it was said that Rs 1,200 crore would be allocated towards setting up health and wellness centres in India, which would provide comprehensive health care, maternal and child care, free drugs and diagnostics to the poor. The government had also invited private sector contribution towards the same.
Apart from the above, Jaitley had announced that a sum of Rs 600 crore would be provided for nutritional support to tuberculosis patients at a rate of Rs 500 per month. Additionally, 24 new government medical colleges and hospitals would be set up by upgrading existing district hospitals, it was said in the budget.