Arogyasri Healthcare Trust, the Rs 1,400-crore health insurance scheme in Andhra Pradesh is being taken a look back in the rear view. The scheme, which provides insurance cover up to Rs 2 lakh for about 80 per cent of population in the State, will soon ask the Administrative Staff College of India (ASCI) and Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) to gauge the model and suggest changes to fine-tune the scheme.
The State Government has directed that the scheme be studied by ASCI and PHFI. It will take about 7-8 months for them to study and revert. Though the Trust had no say in determining eligibility of cardholders, it barred 97 private hospitals from taking Arogyasri patients - some for misuse and others for lack of infrastructure. The Trust had begun initiatives to plug loopholes.
The scheme, which attracted national and international attention for its simplicity and capacity to reach out to millions, earned both accolades and criticism. Accolades for letting the poor to get access to super specialty hospitals, which otherwise would have been a mirage. And, criticism for fake Arogyasri cards that allowed, as even people who could afford to fly are being covered.
The Trust was hopeful of achieving 40:60 ratio as mandated by the Government, of participation by public and private healthcare providers in the scheme by the year-end. The ratio was 13:87 last year. But the Trust had recently mandated that some 133 procedures such as appendicitis should be attended to by public hospitals. Within a few months, the ratio improved to 27:73.
Arogyasri Healthcare Trust, the health insurance scheme in Andhra Pradesh will soon ask the ASCI and Public Health Foundation of India to gauge the model and suggest changes to fine-tune the scheme.