The Centre on Monday rejected media reports that said Maharashtra and Rajasthan were reluctant to join the government’s ambitious health insurance scheme – Ayushman Bharat-National Health Protection Mission.
On Sunday, PTI reported that Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled states, Maharashtra and Rajasthan, had expressed reluctance to implement the scheme as similar projects were being run by the state governments for a larger population. While Rajasthan runs Bhamashah Swasthya Bima Yojana since 2015, Maharashtra runs the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana since 2012.
The government plans to roll out the scheme pan India on August 15.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Monday said the reports were factually incorrect. “The two states are currently reviewing the financial and operational implications of the convergence with Ayushman Bharat to avoid any disruption of services, and ensure that the convergence can be done efficiently and current legal contracts can be honoured,” the ministry said in a press release. “The two states have ongoing contracts with insurance agencies. Any modification of benefit packages would also require negotiations with them. Both states will join Ayushman Bharat as soon as these issues are resolved.”
The Odisha government has refused to implement the Centre’s health programme saying it already is running the Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana, with far more beneficiaries. The West Bengal government agreed to implement the scheme despite several disagreements.
Meanwhile, Punjab and Delhi are yet to give their approval to the Ayushman Bharat programme.