Health insurance cover too low to benefit patients

NAGPUR: Medical fraternity of the city is disappointed with the budget giving little attention to the health sector yet again. The silver lining was the focus on health and accidental insurance. Focus on senior citizens as well as declaration of providing physical aids and assisted living devices for the elderly from below poverty line (BPL) has also been appreciated.

“We were expecting that the expenditure on health sector will be increased. Even the health insurance schemes provided are not enough as most people in the country prefer to go to private doctors and this low cover doesn’t allow patients to have the freedom to chose their health care provider,” said Dr Sanjay Deshpande, president of city chapter of Indian Medical Association.

Ophthalmologist Dr Vikas Mahatme agrees that the selective insurance cover is not enough and a universal health cover would be the ideal way to go for India. “People are not aware what should be demanded in terms of health requirements. So, the government doesn’t provide it,” he said.

Senior paediatrician Dr Uday Bodhankar said though initiating insurance covers is a good idea, the premiums are still very low. He also complimented the budget as a pro-community budget.

Senior financial planner Milind Khasnis called the budget exceptional and one of the best from the insurance point of view. “For the first time, accident insurance was taken up separately and personal accident cover is being provided by the government. This is important as India is the world’s capital of road accidents. Another important step was giving special attention to senior citizens,” he said.

His son and also a financial planner Rahul Khasnis said the provisions would help boost the insurance penetration of the country which now stands at 2.5-3%.He warns, though, that the provisions would only be good if they really function and are implemented the way they sounds now.

Curated from: Health insurance cover too low to benefit patients

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