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regular-article-logo Sunday, 14 April 2024

Nagaland health cover for permanent residents

Scheme to benefit 1.7 lakh households not covered by any govt scheme by providing assured cashless benefit to those requiring hospitalisation at empanelled govt and private hospitals

Umanand Jaiswal Guwahati Published 17.10.22, 12:40 AM
The Opposition-less state government, headed by the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP), had promised in this year’s budget to initiate a health insurance scheme to provide “free and cashless treatment for various ailments to all citizens of the state”.

The Opposition-less state government, headed by the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP), had promised in this year’s budget to initiate a health insurance scheme to provide “free and cashless treatment for various ailments to all citizens of the state”. File picture

Nagaland has become the first state in the Northeast to provide health insurance coverage to its permanent residents with the launch of the CM’s Health Insurance Scheme (CMHIS) on Friday.

The scheme will benefit 1.7 lakh households not covered by any government scheme by providing assured cashless benefit to those requiring hospitalisation at the empanelled government and private hospitals.

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“I urge every citizen to get enrolled in the portal. The CMHIS covers the entire population of the state, will expand the coverage of insurance benefits, over and above those being covered under Prime Minister’s Ayushman Bharat scheme,” chief minister Neiphiu Rio said during the launch of the scheme.

The Opposition-less state government, headed by the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP), had promised in this year’s budget to initiate a health insurance scheme to provide “free and cashless treatment for various ailments to all citizens of the state”.

The launch took place just months ahead of the next year’s Assembly elections.

Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma had announced in August that the government was planning a universal health insurance for those left out of Ayushman Bharat to cover, among others, senior citizens, journalists, and people without ration cards.

Officials said they expected more states to launch such schemes in the run-up to the 2024 Lok Sabha polls because health issues impacted every household.

The scheme will cover state government employees and pensioners, including ex-legislatures and their dependents, under the CMHIS (EP) category. All indigenous and permanent residents of the state, who are not beneficiary under Ayushman Bharat–Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana or any public-funded insurance scheme of the government, will be covered under the CMHIS (GEN) category.

For beneficiary families under the general category, the sum insured is Rs 5 lakh per family per annum on a family floater basis, similar to the benefits extended by Ayushman Bharat for the economically disadvantaged families.

For those under the employees/pensioners category, the sum insured is Rs 20 lakh per family per annum on a family floater basis.

“Further, for government employees, any additional expenses beyond the sum insured shall be reimbursed on

a case-to-case basis by the state government on the recommendation of the State Medical Board,” an official said.

Ayushman Bharat covers about 2.33 lakh households in Nagaland, which has a population of around 22 lakh.

Health minister Pangnyu Phom said there was a substantial section of the society who neither belonged to government employee family nor were eligible for the Ayushman Bharat scheme.

“The government of the day is responsive to these concerns of the people and have come up with a scheme which aims to reduce their financial burden, knowing that medical expenditure is a leading cause of impoverishment,” Phom said, expressing hope that CMHIS will be an important stepping stone to achieve positive health and well-being, and a driver of economic prosperity for the state.

The government has signed an agreement with the Oriental Insurance Company Limited to run the scheme, which draws from the Nagaland Sustainable Development Goal Vision 2030.

It envisages that Nagaland will provide equitable, affordable and quality healthcare services to the people of the state by 2030.

One of the key UN SDG goals is achieving “universal health coverage, including financial risk protection, access to quality essential health-care services and access to safe, effective, quality and affordable essential medicines and vaccines for all”.

Nagaland chief secretary J. Alam said CMHIS was a major step towards fulfilling this vision, adding that the state government held multiple consultations with various stakeholders to come up with a health benefit package they “hope will ensure a balanced and equitable access to quality healthcare for all”.

Senior minister Neiba Kronu appealed to all government officials, civil societies, Church and faith-based organisations, and community leaders to create awareness for timely registration under the scheme.

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