The necessity of adequate health insurance is beyond explanation. Despite this, many people in India do have proper health coverage. While the medical costs are on the rise across the globe, many people have considered buying a health insurance plan to meet the expenses.
But in a country like India, the poor and vulnerable families cannot afford reliable health insurance. Because of this reason, they do not have access to basic healthcare services. To tackle this issue, the Government of India has launched a scheme known as the Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) scheme.
The PMJAY scheme was established in September 2018 and currently aims to provide free healthcare coverage to low-income families in India. The families eligible under the scheme have access to the health coverage of up to INR 5 lakh (provided every year). With this facility, poor people can have access to basic healthcare packages, which can save thousands of innocent lives in due course of time.
Now, we all know the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the world as well as India. The number of cases in the country is rising by each passing day. While the frontline warriors of this disease are overwhelmed with the number of patients to manage each day, many people still have no access to proper test kits and hospitalization treatments.
Taking the cost of coronavirus tests and treatments into consideration, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) passed a memorandum to cover these expenses under health insurance plans. With this, the National Health Authority (NHA) established COVID-19 packages under the PMJAY scheme, effective immediately. It offers free coronavirus tests and treatments to the beneficiaries of this scheme.
Moreover, the NHA also empaneled private hospitals across the country to provide extensive care and treatment to the beneficiaries suffering from this disease. The NHA is also used as a coronavirus help center with over 700 executives adhering to people’s queries regarding the same.
As more and more people are seeking healthcare services under the PMJAY scheme, the NHA is looking to expand the coverage to rural-most regions of the country. Thus, it could help people in India have access to basic health insurance coverage without having to pay premiums towards it. The State and Central Governments of India pay the premiums of the people covered under the scheme.
Ideally, the PMJAY scheme is said to cover 10 crore vulnerable and poor families (over 50 crore individuals) in the country. However, note that not everyone can proceed to Ayushman Bharat registration. You first have to see whether you and your family members are eligible under the scheme or not.
To check the eligibility, follow these steps –
- Visit the official website of PMJAY (www.pmjay.gov.in)
- Enter contact information and generate an OTP (One-Time-Password)
- Choose your state and search by name/HHD number/ration card number/mobile number
- Based on the results, you can verify whether you and your family are covered under the scheme
On the other hand, you can check the eligibility offline by contacting any empaneled health care provider (EHCP) or Ayushman Bharat Yojana call center at 14555 or 1800-111-565. Once you know that you are eligible, you can proceed to the Ayushman Bharat registration procedure. After successful registration, you will be issued an ecard with which you can avail the services under the PMJAY scheme.