‘Ayushman Bharat’ or the ‘Prime Minister’s Jan Aarogya Yojana’ (PM JAY) was launched recently by the Government of India. This health insurance scheme aims to cover 10 crore families based on Socio Economic & Caste Census (SECC) data.
PM JAY is a centrally sponsored sheme where the Center & States will share the expenditure in the ratio of 60:40 for all normal states. This is as per the new guidelines issued by the Ministry of Finance in 2015 for all centrally sponsored schemes.
As per the information shared by the government in the Lok Sabha, 25 States/UTs have signed up for the scheme as of July 2018. Why have some states like Telangana & Andhra Pradesh not signed up for ‘Ayushman Bharat’?
Difference in Eligibility Criteria is a major issue States like Andhra Pradesh & Telangana have an active health insurance scheme that is running for more than 10 years. The Aarogyasri scheme, that is being implemented in these Telugu speaking states was launched in 2007. This scheme differs from ‘Ayushman Bharat’ majorly in terms of the eligibility criteria.
The objection of these states is mainly about the eligibility criteria which leaves out a number of beneficiaries that are currently being served under the Aarogyasri scheme. While the Ayushman Bharat scheme uses the deprivation conditions in SECC as eligibility criteria, the Aarogyasri scheme is extened to all those who hold a Annapurna card or the AAY ration card. The difference in eligibility criteria will result in a reduction of benefiairies which is a major bone of contention between the center & these states.>