Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Wednesday launched the ambitious 'Ayushman Asom' scheme in line with the Central government's 'Ayushman Bharat' to provide health coverage to 26 lakh families in the state.
As per the newly launched scheme, each eligible family member will get cashless medical treatment up to Rs 5 lakh in empanelled hospitals across the country.Launching the project, Sarma said: "Beneficiaries listed under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) who have an Aadhar card and are not covered under Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana shall be eligible for benefits under Ayushman Asom."
Stating that out-of-pocket expenditures on healthcare expenses make a huge dent in the well-being of many families, Sarma said that the inclusion of 26 lakh uncovered families in Ayushman Asom would ensure all economically vulnerable families of the state are covered by either central or state government's health insurance schemes.
According to the Chief Minister, the number of Below Poverty Line (BPL) families in Assam has increased from the 2011 socio-economic census data and they have been brought under the National Food Security Act.
"Currently, there are roughly 56 lakh families who have ration cards under the Food Security Act. Among them, 30 lakh families are getting health coverage under Ayushman Bharat. The state government has included the rest of 26 lakh families to get cashless treatment," Sarma said.
He also mentioned that another 5 lakh ration cards will be given in the next few months and those families will also be brought under the 'Ayushman Asom' scheme."People can get 1,578 treatment procedures done in 300 empanelled hospitals in Assam.
Moreover, they can also have the option of cashless treatment in hospitals in other states where Ayushman Bharat is in effect," Sarma added.However, in states where the Ayushman Bharat scheme is not implemented, the Assam government's Ayushman Asom will also not work.
The Chief Minister also stated that improvement of the healthcare sector has been one of the priority areas of the current state government led by him. He said the recent inauguration of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences at Changsari, along with a number of new medical colleges and hospitals across the state, will lead to a never-before-seen positive change in the state's healthcare sector in days to come.