Punjab Government keen to extend this scheme to all residents across State
The Punjab Government has so far treated more than 82,150 patients under the Ayushman Bharat-Sarbat Sehat Bima Yojna (AB-SSBY) at a cost of Rs.90.43 crore. This was stated by Punjab Health & Family Welfare Minister Mr. Balbir Singh Sidhu on Wednesday during a press conference held at committee room of State Health Agency, here.
Highlighting the achievements of AB-SSBY, the minister further said that around 38.55 lakh e-cards have been generated to extend the benefits of this ambitious health insurance scheme to the beneficiaries and the process is still on. "SSBY was running successfully ever since it was launched by the Chief Minister Punjab Captain Amarinder Singh on August 20 this year", the minister said, adding that the visionary approach of Captain Amarinder Singh has made it possible for the people of Punjab to derive the advantage of quality health care services without any expenses.
He informed that the state government has decided to hire its own agency to accelerate the process of generating e-cards in the state and the tender to depute the agency will be floated soon.
Health Minister also stated that 639 hospitals have been empanelled under SSBY to provide the secondary as well as tertiary healthcare services at the door step of the beneficiaries and the work to add more such hospitals is in progress. He said that under the tertiary care services, besides 1291 knee and hip replacements and 1474 Cardiac Surgeries, 1145 cancer patients have already been treated.
Mr. Balbir Singh Sidhu asserted that the Captain Amarinder Singh led Punjab Government is also working on a proposal to extend the benefit of this pro-people initiative to all the residents across the state and government will soon bring remaining families in the ambit of SSBY. With this, Punjab will become the one of the few states in the country wherein everyone will have access to free treatment.
In addition, Mr. Sidhu announced that the journalists could also get their e-cards, which would be generated from December 13 at Chandigarh Press Club, Sector 27 and at Press Club, Mohali. The procedure will be carried out by Common Service Centres (CSCs). The inclusion of other family members of the beneficiaries is underway and they could avail the services by visiting any of the empanelled hospitals or 22 district kiosks set up at the District Hospitals.
He reiterated that the Punjab Government is committed to provide quality health care services to all the people of the state and Sarbat Sehat Bima Yojana would prove to be a milestone in this sector. He said that the project was implemented in the state, which covers 75 percent of the population of the state. "To check the eligibility for cashless treatment, anybody can visit the website www.shapunjab.in or contact the nearest CSC for e-card generation", he added.
Divulging further, the minister said that the state government has also constituted the ‘State Anti Fraud Unit’ to address complaints of beneficiaries and to investigate frauds report under Ayushman Bharat-Sarbat Sehat Bima Yojana. He said that out of 1502 complaints registered on 104 helpline, 1220 complaints had been disposed off so far. He said that special teams constituted under the Deputy Medical Commissioner to immediately redress the grievances at the district level. He said that if in any case, empanelled hospital would deny to providing benefit of insurance scheme, stern action would be taken against the erring establishment.
Elaborating on the categories of beneficiaries included earlier under the scheme, the minister said that Socio-Economic Castes Census 2011, Smart Ration Cardholder Families, J-Farm Holder Farmer Families, Small Traders, and Registered Construction Workers but at the time of its launch, Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh extended the benefits of the scheme to the Accredited/Yellow Card Holder Journalists and Small and Marginal farmers, also. The Journalists have already started availing the benefits of the scheme and very soon small and marginal farmers will be able to avail the advantages.
Amongst others, who were present on the occasion included; Mr. Kumar Rahul, C.E.O. State Health Agency, Mr. Manvesh Singh Sidhu, MD, Punjab Health Systems Corporation, Dr. Shaweta Kumari, A.C.E.O. State Health Agency, Mr. Harkesh Chand Sharma, Political Secretary to Health Minister, Dr. Balwinder Singh, OSD to Health Minister and other senior officers of the health department.