BHUBANESWAR: With the Centre planning to roll out National Health Protection Scheme by the end of this year, the State Government has decided to extend Biju Krushak Kalyan Yojana (BKKY), the health insurance scheme specially designed for farmer families, till July this year.
The decision, which was taken at a high-powered committee meeting chaired by Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi, will benefit about 57.64 lakh families of the State. Since the insurance period was till March 2017, the State Government will pay the premium for the extended period on pro rata basis, official sources said.
Earlier, the Centre had announced to launch National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS) from April 1, 2018. Accordingly, the State Government had decided to merge BKKY with NHPS. However, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said, the NHPS which will cover 10 crore families with an insurance cover of Rs 5 lakh each and will be implemented towards of the end of this year.Apart from the State’s own health insurance scheme, over 45 lakh families are covered under the Centrally-sponsored Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY). Under RSBY, the premium cost is shared by the Centre and State in 60:40 basis.
The health insurance scheme is implemented in two packages. Around 25,60,602 families are covered under stream-I which offered medical treatment upto Rs 30,000 per year per family while the financial benefit under the stream-II is upto Rs 70,000 per year per family.
Over 32 lakh families are covered under stream-II.The State Government has paid a premium of Rs 405.38 crore for the beneficiaries. As many as 4.66 families has availed the benefit to the tune of Rs 279 crore of the scheme, official sources said.The Government has empanelled 551 hospitals, including 128 private ones, under the scheme.
The Chief Secretary has directed the department concerned to create massive public awareness among the farmers for health insurance under BKKY to facilitate their treatment and also suggested the agriculture and health departments to include more farmers under insurance coverage. He further directed to promote use of BKKY smart card during treatment of the beneficiaries. The meeting decided that a portion of the insurance benefits should be given to hospital staff as incentive to promote the use of smart card.