Goa govt hopes to cover 1 lakh households under health scheme

    Panaji, Aug 18 (PTI) After delaying the implementationof its ambitious health insurance scheme by a fortnight, Goagovernment expects to cover at least one lakh households underit by September 1. The state government postponed the launch of DeenDayal Swasth Seva Yojana (DDSSY) to September 1 from itsearlier announced date of August 15. "The number of cards available with the state-run GoaElectronic Limited (GEL) was not sufficient compared to thenumber of forms filled by the people due to which the schemewas postponed," State Health Secretary Sudhir Mahajan told PTItoday. The scheme which was announced earlier had 1.10 lakhfamilies applying for the cards, of which only 50,000 cardswere ready. It prompted the government to reschedule theformal launch, he said. "By September 1, we will be able to generate at leastone lakh cards under this scheme. The rest of the cards wouldbe ready later," Mahajan said. The scheme which was recently discussed on the floorof the House had drawn criticism as Opposition benches claimedthat majority of the medical procedures covered under it werenot conducted in Goa Medical College and Hospital. Mahajan said the scheme has empanelled 20 privatehospitals, majority in Goa and few outside the state, whileaudit of three to four more such facilities (hospitals) is inprogress. "Some super-speciality medical centre of excellencewill be empanelled under DDSSY. The ceiling on insurance forthe family of three and less is Rs 2.5 lakh and more thanthree is Rs 4lakh per annum," he said. United India Insurance Limited has bagged the contractfor the scheme, whose annual payment would depend on theclaims made by the beneficiaries, he added. The secretary stated that the high pocket expenseswhich used to financially pinch the people will be covered bythis scheme, so that the beneficiary will have an optioneither to take treatment in state-run GMCH or opt for aprivate hospital. PTI RPS DK ASVRDS

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