MUMBAI: The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) Chairman on Tuesday said that low consumer awareness and insufficient healthcare infrastructure are the major hindrances to widen the reach of healthcare insurance in India.

The health insurance scheme for unorganised workers launched by the Government of India holds the potential to effect a socio-economic change of far reaching significance. The Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY), launched formally last year, will provide coverage for the families of the unorganised sector workers below the poverty line.

HALF-HEARTEDLY, after months of discussions and negotiations, the Left Democratic Front (LDF) government in Kerala has launched a modified version of the Central government

Medical insurance is now being actively promoted by the government as a means of providing and covering the costs of healthcare. But such insurance is riddled with problems and faces some very India-specific constraints.

THE OTHER INDIA
Sreelatha Menon / New Delhi July 23, 2008, 0:28 IST

After the overwhelming success of its job cards scheme, which covered about 20 million households in villages, the UPA government is ready with yet another programme, health insurance for poor, and a set of smart cards.

Tinesh Bhasin & Falaknaaz Syed Holders of health insurance policies issued from June 1 onwards will benefit. Buyers of health insurance policies will now get their pre-existing diseases covered from the fourth year of their policy. Pre-existing disease has long been a grey area and the biggest reason for dispute among insurance companies and medical insurance policyholders. Insurers under the aegis of the General Insurance Council

Atiq Khan Nearly 99 lakh families living below the poverty line (BPL) in Uttar Pradesh can look forward to getting quality medical care under the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) in hospitals of their choice, including private nursing homes, from this coming July 1. A memorandum of understanding to this effect was signed between the Union Government and the UP Government on Friday. The signatories to the MoU were the Director-General, Union Labour and Employment Ministry, Anil Swaroop, and Principal Secretary in the State Rural Development Department, J. N. Chamber.

The Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana, launched on October 1 last, will become operational from Tuesday.

Awareness about insurance is quite high in India, yet less than three out of 10 households in the country have opted for some kind of life insurance cover, a survey said. "The awareness about insurance is quite high in India. Around 78 per cent of households are aware of insurance products. However, ownership of insurance products is low

This paper has threefold objectives: (a) to discuss the background and the need for a health insurance scheme; (b) to examine the different health insurance schemes including Community Based Universal Health Insurance Scheme (CBUHIS) and the most recent one proposed by the National Commission for Enterprises in the Unorganized Sector (NCEUS); and (c) to summarize broad lessons from existing health insurance schemes to foreground the broad contours of the most desirable insurance scheme in the Indian context.

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