New Delhi: Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Friday informed the Lok Sabha that Delhi, Telangana, West Bengal and Odisha were still not ready to implement Ayushman Bharat — the flagship scheme of ‘Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana,’ (PM-JAY), which insures poor families for an annual amount of Rs five lakh for availing hospital care.
Replying to a query raised by an MP during Question Hour over the Ayushman Health Card question, the Minister further requested the Chief Ministers of these four states to implement the scheme for the welfare of the poor people.
Calling the scheme a unique and ambitious scheme in the world, Harsh Vardhan said over 55 crore poor people will be benefited through the scheme and that more than 82 lakh people have already availed the benefit of the scheme in the last one year.
The Minister said: “We have decided to establish 1.5 lakh Health Care Well Centres under the scheme by December 31, 2022 and over 40,000 such centres will be completed by March 31 this year.”
He said that a total of 12.04 crore people have been provided Ayushman Health Card so far through which they can benefit the health treatment at any 22,000 empanelled hospitals under the Ayushman Bharat scheme.
He, however, clarified that the remaining 43 crore people, who have not received the Ayushman Health Card so far, can also avail the benefit of the Centre’s scheme as it is only for the poor people.
Ayushman Bharat was launched as recommended by the National Health Policy 2017 to achieve the vision of the Universal Health Coverage (UHC). This initiative has been designed on the lines to meet the Sustainable Development Goals and its underlying commitment, which is “leave no one behind”.